Skip to main content

Full text of "The Occult Roots Of Nazism"

See other formats


THE OCCULT ROOTS 
OF NAZISM 



Secret Aryan Cults and their 
Influence on Nazi Ideology 



NICHOLAS GOODRICK-CLARKE 




TAURIS PARKE 
PAPERBACKS 



Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke is a specialist on Nazi ideology 
and currently Research Fellow in the Western Esoteric 
Tradition, University of Wales, Lampeter. 



Reprinted in 2005 

Published in 2004 by Tauris Parke Paperbacks 
and imprint of I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd 
6 Salem Road, London W2 4BU 
175 Fifth Avenue, New York NY 10010 
www.ibtauris.com 

Copyright © Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke 1985, 1992, 2004. 

The right of Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke to be identified as the author of this 
work has been asserted by the author in accordance with the Copyright, 
Designs and Patents Act 1988. 

All rights reserved. Except for brief quotations in a review, this book, or 
any part thereof, may not be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a 
retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, 
mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior 
written permission of the publisher. 

ISBN 1 86064 973 4 
EAN 978 1 86064 973 8 

A full CIP record for this book is available from the British Library 
Printed and bound in Great Britain by MPG Books Ltd, Bodmin. 



Contents 



Page 

Acknowledgements iv 

Illustrations v 

Author’s Preface to 2004 Edition vi 

Foreword ix 

Introduction 1 

PART 1: THE BACKGROUND 

1 . The Pan-German Vision 7 

2. The Modern German Occult Revival 1880-1910 17 

PART 2: THE ARIOSOPHISTS OF VIENNA 

3. Guido von List 33 

4. Wotanism and Germanic Theosophy 49 

5. The Armanenschaft 56 

6. The Secret Heritage 66 

7. The German Millennium 78 

8. Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels and Theozoology 90 

9. The Order of the New Templars 106 

PART 3: ARIOSOPHY IN GERMANY 

10. The Germanenorden 123 

1 1 . Rudolf von Sebottendorff and the Thule Society 135 

12. The Holy Runes and the Edda Society 153 

13. Herbert Reichstein and Ariosophy 164 

14. Karl Maria Wiligut: The Private Magus of 

Heinrich Himmler 177 

1 5 . Ariosophy and Adolf Hitler 1 92 

Appendix A: Genealogy of Lanz von Liebenfels 205 

Appendix B: Genealogy of the Sebottendorff Family 207 

Appendix C: The History of Ariosophy 209 

Appendix D: New Templar Verse 215 

Appendix E: The Modern Mythology of Nazi Occultism 2 1 7 

Notes and References 227 

Bibliography 265 

Index 289 

iii 




Acknowledgements 



Several individuals were kind enough to help me gather the rare 
sources of Ariosophy and also offered valuable encouragement. Here 
I would like to thank especially Mr Ellic Howe, Pastor Ekkehard 
Hieronimus, Dr Armin Mohler, Professor Dr Helmut Moller, the late 
Herr Rudolf J. Mund, Dr Reginald H. Phelps, and Dr Wilfried Daim. 
Meetings and correspondence with Herren Hermann Gilbhard, 
Gerhard Kurtz, Eckehard Lenthe, Arthur Lorber, Adolf Schleipfer, 
Karlheinz Schwecht, Dr Johannes Kopf, and Dr Johannes von 
Mullern-Schonhausen also furthered my quest in Germany and 
Austria. 

An earlier version of this work was submitted as a thesis for the 
degree of Doctor of Philosophy in the University of Oxford and I 
therefore wish to record my gratitude to my successive supervisors 
who gave constructive criticism and support: Professor Norman 
Cohn, Dr Bryan Wilson, and Professor Peter Pulzer. I am also grateful 
to the German Historical Institute, London, for the award of a 
travelling bursary in 1978. 

I owe thanks to the libraries and staffs of the British Museum; the 
Bodleian Library, Oxford; the Warburg Institute, University of 
London; the Wiener Library, London; the Bundesarchiv, Koblenz; 
the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munich; the Berlin Document 
Center, and the Osterreichische Nadonalbibliothek, Vienna. 

I am finally grateful to Mr Leonard Baker for assisting me in the 
correction of the proofs. 




Illustrations 

between pages 150 and 151 



1 Guido von List 1910 

2 Freidrich Wannieck 

3 Freidrich Oskar Wannieck 

4 Blasius von Schemua 

5 Philipp Stauff 

6 Bernhard Koerner 

7 List, Das Geheimnis der Runen (1908) 

8 List, Die Bilderschrift der Ario-Germanen (1910) 

9 Tarnhari, name-runes and occult coat-of-arms, c. 1915 

10 HAO pilgrimage to Carnuntum, June 1911 

1 1 Funerary tumulus for F.O. Wannieck in Munich, 1914 

12 Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels PONT 

1 3 Flagstone showing knight and beast, excavated at Heiligenkreuz 
Abbey in 1894 

14 Ostara illustration, 1922 

15 Burg Werfenstein 

16 Werfenstein ex-libris 

17 Templar Room at Burg Werfenstein 

18 Marienkamp-Szt. Balazs 

19 Staufen 

20 Theodor Fritsch 

21 Lodge ceremony for novices, c.1912 

22 Founding meeting of Order at Leipzig, 24/25 May 1912 

23 Rudolf von Sebottendorff 

24 Thule Society emblem, 1919 

25 Herbert Reichstein 

26 Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann 

27 Gregor Schwartz-Bostunitsch 

28 Rudolf John Gorsleben 

29 Werner von Billow’s ‘world-rune-clock’ 

30 Karl Maria Wiligut in July 1945 

31 Wiligut family seal, 1933 

32 SS Totenkopfring design, 1941 

33 SS-Oberfiihrer Weisthor (K. M. Wiligut) in 1936 




Author’s Preface to 2004 Edition 



As WE witness the renewed growth of the far right across Europe, 
America and the former East Bloc, The Occult Roots of Nazism helps illu- 
minate its ideological foundations. By examining the occult ideas that 
played midwife to the Hitler movement, the most destructive right- 
wing ideology in history, we can better understand their implications 
today. 

When the book first appeared, popular literature on the link 
between Hitler, Nazi ideology, occultism and Tibetan mysteries had 
proliferated since the 1960s and Nazi “black magic” was regarded as a 
topic for sensational authors in pursuit of strong sales. The very exist- 
ence of this sort of literature tended to inhibit serious historical enquiry 
into the religious and occult aspects of German National Socialism. 

Before the 1980s only a few serious writers, including Raymond 
Aron, Albert Camus, Romano Guardini, Denis de Rougemeont, Eric 
Voegelin, George Mosse, Klaus Vondung and Friedrich Heer had 
alluded to the religious aspects of National Socialism. This neglect was 
all the more surprising since commentators during the Third Reich had 
already noted its cultic appeal. A wider understanding of Nazi religios- 
ity awaited the scholarly examination of the pre-Nazi volkisch ideology. 

The Occult Roots of Nazism documents the lives, doctrines and cult 
activities of the Ariosophists of Vienna and their successors in 
Germany, who combined volkisch German nationalism and Aryan 
racial theories with occultism. They articulated a defensive ideology of 
German identity and illiberalism, since they were especially concerned 
with the political emergence of the subject nationalities of multi-ethnic 
Austria-Hungary after 1900. Since their ideas in respect of ancient 
Aryan homelands (Hyperborea and Atlantis), suppressed pagan priest- 
hoods, Germanic religion and runic wisdom later filtered through to 

vi 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Heinrich Himmler and his SS research departments, Ariosophy pro- 
vided a model case-study in Nazi religiosity. The continuity of such 
beliefs through the Third Reich, with its eschatological vision of geno- 
cide, clearly demonstrated the irrelevance of a Marxist analysis based 
on a critique of capitalism, economic factors and class interest. Only 
religious beliefs and myth could explain the success of an ideology 
concerned with special racial and esoteric knowledge, the belief in a 
nefarious world-conspiracy of scheming Jews and other racial in- 
feriors, and the apocalyptic promise of group salvation in a millenarian 
apotheosis of the German nation. These ideas all derived from pre- 
rational and pre-modern traditions. 

The first publication of The Occult Roots of Nazism stimulated a wider 
scholarly appreciation of the religious and cultic aspects of National 
Socialism. Several German books were subsequently published on the 
volkisch movement, now with special reference to the Ariosophists; 
British and American historians gave increased attention to the import- 
ance of religious and millenarian elements in Nazi ideology. 

But there is a further compelling reason why The Occult Roots of 
Nazism is increasingly read and noted. The widening scholarly aware- 
ness and treatment of Nazism as a political religion is in part a re- 
sponse to the growing role of religion in politics today. The end of the 
Cold War also concluded the twentieth-century “ideological wars” of 
fascism, liberalism and communism. Idealis tic visions of political order 
have given way to ideologies of cultural identity, in which religion plays 
a major part. The rapid growth and impact of Islamic militancy, 
Hindu nationalism and Christian fundamentalism in the 1990s have 
sharply reminded us that beliefs and myths can provide a dynamic 
and often destructive form of political expression. The re-emergence 
of these forms of political religiosity makes it much easier to under- 
stand the extraordinary appeal of myth, religious imagery and political 
idealism that animated Nazism in its own era. 

Meanwhile, the radical right itself has resurfaced in the Western 
democracies. From the mid-1980s onwards, Western countries wit- 
nessed the rise of the radical right, pushing for political space on the 
margins of liberal society. By the early 1990s, the increasing numbers 
and political assertion of immigrant and ethnic minorities in advanced 
industrial states, led the United States, Britain and other states still with 
predominantly white populations to embrace the idea of a multi- 
cultural society. The end of the Soviet empire and its erstwhile im- 
permeable borders across central and eastern Europe then unleashed 
a further movement of economic migrants, refugees and so-called 

vii 




AUTHOR’S PREFACE TO 2004 EDITION 



asylum-seekers across Asia. By the early 2000s Europe and North 
America had become the favoured destination for migrant population 
flows from the developing world, often placing an unsustainable burden 
on local housing, education and health services. Skyrocketing immigra- 
tion figures, coupled with liberal demands for multi-culturalism, have 
recreated similar political circumstances to those which gave rise to far- 
right neo-Nazi parties in the United States and Britain in the 1 960s, in 
response to civil rights legislation and non-white immigration. Once 
again, far right parties have re-emerged, with the British National Party 
winning a number of local council ward seats in urban areas of mixed 
ethnic settlement. Fuelled by these issues, populist parties have 
achieved a high profile in other European states. 

However, the expression of right-wing radicalism is by no means 
limited to the populist parties that seek electoral success in Britain, 
France, Austria, Germany, Holland and Denmark. Racial nationalism 
escalates in numerous underground groupuscules, which communicate 
through small magazines available from PO box addresses or on the 
internet, through white power rock music groups and concerts. In this 
‘cultic milieu’ one discovers the ideological heirs of the pre-Nazi volkisch 
movement. This milieu and its mentors are examined in my successor 
volume Black Sun: Aryan Cults , Esoteric Nazism, and the Politics of Identity. 
Such groupuscules coin esoteric symbols of white racial identity, facili- 
tate discourses of resistance to the coloured invasion of the West, and 
embrace a rich plethora of conspiracy theories and occult ideas involv- 
ing the mystique of the blood, Nazi-Tibetan connections and even 
Nazi-manned UFOs. The names of the Ariosophists, Guido von List, 
Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels, Rudolf John Gorsleben and Karl Maria 
Wiligut (‘Himmler’s Rasputin’) have themselves become current in this 
milieu, thereby underlining the direct line of descent between 
Ariosophy in the 1920s and 1930s and the re-emergence of a cultic far 
right today. 

This new edition of The Occult Roots of Nazism appears at a time when 
the cultic far right has increased its range and impact further by focus- 
ing resentment against big government and the growth of regulatory 
bureaucracy, affirmative action and the race relations industry, and 
massive increases in third-world immigration. It is highly significant 
that today’s multi-culturalism also recapitulates the special circum- 
stances in multi-ethnic Austria-Hungary before 1914. The example of 
the Ariosophists, definitively documented in this volume, resonates no 
less strongly today in the context of globalization, mass immigration 
and religious nationalism. 

viii 




Foreword 



I HAVE no claim to be an occultist but I welcome this opportunity to 
write a word at the inception of Dr Nicholas Goodrick- Clarke’s telling 
study of the occult roots of national socialism. When I wrote The Roots of 
National Socialism Adolf Hitler was in power. At that time it had become 
the fashion, in England certainly, to regard the Nazis as hardly more 
than a bunch of gangsters w 7 ho had by some economic or propogandist 
trick won the following of the liberal-minded bulk of the German 
people. I wrote to suggest that a deeper explanation might be sought 
in a German tradition of political thought which was liable to promote 
an outlook on society in some sympathy with aspects of national 
socialism. Thus, my book proved to be initially controversial. 

As the Second World War progressed, however, it became in- 
creasingly evident that something more, even, than fear had been 
needed to keep a large majority of the German people loyal to the Nazi 
Third Reich through thick and thin, displaying remarkable courage 
and endurance almost to the bitter end. After the war this W'as 
recognized by the Rhineland statesman who began to lead the 
Germans of the Federal Republic into the light again and into the great 
combination of the western nations in defence of freedom. Dr Konrad 
Adenauer wrote: ‘National socialism could not have come to power in 
Germany if it had not found, in broad strata of the population, soil 
prepared for its sowing of poison. I stress, in broad strata of the 
population. It is not accurate to say that the high military or the great 
industrialists alone bear the guilt . . . Broad strata of the people, of the 
peasants, middle classes, workers and intellectuals did not have the 
right intellectual attitude.’ 

Since the publication of my book (now reprinted in the United 
States) a formidable amount of further research into the ideology and 
practice of national socialism, much of it untranslated from the 
German, has added to our stock of facts and theories. I have 
sometimes wondered wTiether the gain in fresh insights has been 
commensurate. No such doubt arose in reading The Occult Roots of 
Nazism. 

ix 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Dr Goodrick-Clarke describes his study as an unusual and under- 
ground history in exploration of a ‘netherworld of fantasv’. In the 
romantic amalgam of fact and make-believe characteristic of the 
steamy subculture of Ariosophy, of supposedly occult wisdom 
concerning the Aryans, the two leading exponents here presented are 
Guido von List and Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels, both of Vienna in the 
early days there of Adolf Hitler. 

In my own survey, less concentrated in theme and treatment, I 
considered areas of German political thought liable to predispose 
many educated Germans towards Nazi ideology, while remarking that 
the Nazi leaders themselves were mostly men of small education who 
seized hold of the ideas and prejudices which came most naturally to 
them, as to others. I also referred to a German interplay of nihilism 
and mysticism and to a ‘deficient German grip upon reality’ so that 
Germans, for all their technical mastery, might find it difficult in times 
of stress to distinguish the heroic from the trumpery. This suggestion 
is richly illustrated in the present book, starting from the stress 
experienced by those of German stock in the face of the Slav 
resurgence towards the close of the Austro-Hungarian empire, 
succeeded by the shock of defeat in the First World War. 

In examining those thinkers, or dreamers, who most probably did 
actually influence Hitler and his intellectual peers Dr Goodrick- 
Clarke validates extensive research by scholarly evaluation. One may 
notice, for instance, his caution in assessing the influence of Lanz von 
Liebenfels, assumed by Joachim Fest in his biography of Hitler to 
have dominated his early years. There is no doubt about the Nazi 
connections of Rudolf von Sebottendorff of the Thule Society or of 
Karl Maria Wiligut, the magus who was promoted SS-Brigadefuhrer 
by Himmler, more addicted than Hitler to the pagan cult of nordic 
mythology. Harking back to primitive myths, propagating that of the 
subhuman Untermensch, the Nazis in the twentieth century evolved 
with great efficiency a political dispensation so innovative and so cruel 
that it still exerts a horrid fascination. 

Dr Goodrick-Clarke concludes that the Nazi leaders were obsessed 
by ‘semi-religious beliefs in a race of Aryan god-men, the needful 
extermination of inferiors, and a wonderful millennial future of 
German world-domination ... a hellish vision . . . Auschwitz, Sobibor, 
and Treblinka are the terrible museums of twentieth-century Nazi 
apocalyptic.’ Those fierce names were as yet hardly known when I 
wrote my study. One knows now. And this book further helps one to 
understand. 

Rohan Butler 
x June 1985 




Introduction 



This is an unusual history. Although it presents an account of past 
events relating to the origins and ideology of National Socialism in 
Germany, its proper subject is not the parties, policies and organizations 
through which men rationally express their interests in a social and 
political context. Rather, it is an underground history, concerned with 
the myths, symbols and fantasies that bear on the development of 
reactionary, authoritarian, and Nazi styles of thinking. It is also a 
marginal history, since its principal characters were mystics, seers and 
sectarians who had little to do with the outer realities of politics and 
administration. But such men had the imagination and opportunity to 
describe a dream-world that often underlay the sentiments and 
actions of more worldly men in positions of power and responsibility. 
Indeed, their abstruse ideas and weird cults anticipated the political 
doctrines and institutions of the Third Reich. 

For historians trained exclusively in the evaluation of concrete 
events, causes, and rational purposes, this netherworld of fantasy may 
seem delusive. They would argue that politics and historical change 
are driven only by real material interests. However, fantasies can 
achieve a causal status once they have been institutionalized in beliefs, 
values, and social groups. Fantasies are also an important symptom of 
impending cultural changes and political action. The particular 
fantasies discussed in this book were generated within an extreme 
right-wing movement concerned with the creation of a superman 
elite, the extermination of lesser beings, and the establishment of a 
new world-order. The nature of this movement has set it quite apart 
from the mainstream of rational politics in the twentieth century and 
demands answers relating to its deeper inspiration. An analysis of the 
fantasies underlying such a movement can provide new answers to old 
questions. 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

The following study traces these fantasies by presenting an historical 
account of the lives, doctrines and cult activities of the Ariosophists, 1 
namely Guido von List (1848-1919) and Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels 
(1874-1954) and their followers in Austria and Germany. The 
Ariosophists, initially active in Vienna before the First World War, 
combined German volkisch nationalism and racism with occult notions 
borrowed from the theosophy of Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, in order 
to prophesy and vindicate a coming era of German world rule. Their 
writings described a prehistoric golden age, when wise gnostic 
priesthoods had expounded occult-racist doctrines and ruled over a 
superior and racially pure society. They claimed that an evil conspiracy 
of anti-German interests (variously identified as the non-Aryan races, 
the Jews, or even the early Church) had sought to ruin this ideal 
Germanic world by emancipating the non-German inferiors in the 
name of a spurious egalitarianism. The resulting racial confusion was 
said to have heralded the historical world with its wars, economic 
hardship, political uncertainty and the frustration of German world 
power. In order to counter this modern world, the Ariosophists 
founded secret religious orders dedicated to the revival of the lost 
esoteric knowledge and racial virtue of the ancient Germans, and the 
corresponding creation of a new pan-German empire. 

The Ariosophists were cultural pessimists. An obvious link exists 
between their fantasies and the grievances of German nationalists in 
the Habsburg empire of Austria-Hungary towards the end of the 
nineteenth century. Such factors as Catholicism, the rapid urban and 
industrial changes in society, the conflict of Slav and German interests 
in a multi-national state, the rise of the Austrian Pan-German 
movement under Georg von Schonerer, and the vogue of Social 
Darwinism and its racist precepts were also crucial influences upon 
their thinking. The role and importance of occultism in their doctrines 
is principally explicable as a sacred form of legitimation for their 
profound reaction to the present and their extreme political attitudes. 
The fantasies of the Ariosophists concerned elitism and purity, a sense 
of mission in the face of conspiracies, and millenarian visions of a 
felicitous national future. 

This introduction is intended to set the scene for a detailed 
examination of Ariosophy. The background against which Ariosophy 
arose was that of the contemporary nineteenth-century ideas of 
nationalism, anti-liberalism, cultural pessimism, and racism. Our 
point of departure will be the volkisch movement which combined 
these concepts into a coherent ideological system. In his study of the 



2 




INTRODUCTION 



volkisch ideology, George L. Mosse has commented on the spiritual 
connotations of the word ‘Volk’. During the nineteenth century this 
term signified much more than its straightforward translation ‘people’ 
to contemporary Germans: it denoted rather the national collectivity 
inspired by a common creative energy, feelings and sense of indivi- 
duality. These metaphysical qualities were supposed to define the 
unique cultural essence of the German people. An ideological 
preoccupation with the Volk arose for two reasons: firstly, this cultural 
orientation was the result of the delayed political unification of 
Germany; secondly, it was closely related to a widespread romantic 
reaction to modernity. 2 

The disunity of Germany had been graphically illustrated by the 
mosaic of small particularist kingdoms, principalities and duchies 
which, together with the larger states of Prussia and Austria, constituted 
the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation until its formal 
dissolution in 1806. After the defeat of Napoleon this state of affairs 
was barely changed by the creation of a loose German Confederation 
that left the member states free to pursue their separate paths. If the 
results of the Congress of Vienna had disappointed German nationalists 
in 1815, their hopes were again frustrated after the revolutions of 
1848. As a result of this slow progress towards political unification, 
Germans increasingly came to conceive of national unity in cultural 
terms. This tendency had begun in the late eighteenth century, when 
writers of the pre- roman tic Sturm und Drang movement had expressed 
the common identity of all Germans in folk-songs, customs, and 
literature. An idealized image of medieval Germany was invoked to 
prove her claim to spiritual unity, even if there had never been 
political unity. This emphasis on the past and traditions conferred a 
strongly mythological character upon the cause of unification. 3 

When Bismarck proclaimed the Prussian king the German Kaiser of 
a new Second Reich in 1 8 7 1 , national unity seemed won at last. But the 
new state proved a disappointment to many Germans. The idealistic 
anticipation of unity had nurtured utopian and messianic expectations, 
which could not be fulfilled by the prosaic realities of public 
administration. Quasi- religious sentiments could find no oudetin the 
ordinary business of government and diplomacy. It was widely felt 
that political unification under Prussia had not brought with it that 
exalted sense of. national self-awareness implicit in its expectation. 
Moreover, the new Reich was feverishly occupied in building up 
industry and the cities, a process which seemed merely materialistic 
and which was destroying the old rural Germany, an essential idyll in 



3 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

the romantic celebration of German identity. The mock-medieval 
Kaiser, his modern battleships and the contemporary Griinderstil 
architecture, have all been cited as symbols of this tension between the 
old and new in the Second Reich. Behind the extravagance of royal 
pageantry and pompous street facades lay the secular realities of a 
rapid industrial revolution. 

The exclusion of Austria from the new Prussian-dominated Reich 
had left disappointed nationalists in both countries. Hopes for a 
Greater Germany had been dashed in 1 866, when Bismarck consoli- 
dated the ascendancy of Prussia through the military defeat of Austria, 
forcing her withdrawal from German affairs. The position of German 
nationalists in Austria-Hungary was henceforth problematic. In 1867 
the Hungarians were granted political independence within a dual 
state. The growth of the Pan-German movement in Austria in the 
following decades reflected the dilemma of Austrian Germans within 
a state of mixed German and Slav nationalities. Their programme 
proposed the secession of the German-setded provinces of Austria 
from the polyglot Habsburg empire and their incorporation in the 
new Second Reich across the border. Such an arrangement was 
ultimately realized by the Anschluss of Austria into the Third Reich in 
1938. 

The volkisch ideology also embraced a general reaction to modernity. 
Both Germany and Austria-Hungary had been late developers in 
comparison with the western economies. The survival of pre-capitalist 
attitudes and institutions in these countries meant that modernization 
imposed a particular strain upon individuals who still identified with a 
traditional, rural social order. Many people despised modernization 
because the growing towns and mushrooming industries uprooted 
established communities and disturbed their sense of security and 
status. Liberalism and rationalism were also rejected because they 
tended to demystify time-honoured institutions and to discredit 
accepted beliefs and authorities. This anti-modernist discontent has 
been analysed in the writings of three important German nationalist 
prophets: Paul de Lagarde, Julius Langbehn, and Moeller van den 
Bruck. 4 

Racism and elitism also had their place in th e volkisch ideology. The 
fact of racial differences was exploited to lend validity to claims of 
national distinction and superiority. Once anthropology and linguistics 
had offered empirical standards for the classification of races, these 
became a staple in volkisch eulogies of the German race. A set of inner 
moral qualities was related to the external characteristics of racial 



4 




INTRODUCTION 



types: while the Aryans (and thus the Germans) were blue-eyed, blond- 
haired, tall and well-proportioned, they were also noble, honest, and 
courageous. The Darwinist idea of evolution through struggle was also 
taken up in order to prove that the superior pure races would prevail 
over the mixed inferior ones. Racial thinking facilitated the rise of 
political anti-Semitism, itself so closely linked to the strains of 
modernization. Feelings of conservative anger at the disruptive 
consequences of economic change could find release in the vilification 
of the Jews, who were blamed for the collapse of traditional values and 
institutions. Racism indicated that the Jews were not just a religious 
community but biologically different from other races. 5 

The Ariosophists had their political roots in the late nineteenth- 
century volkisch ideology and the Pan-German movement in Austria. 
Their reactionary response to the nationality problem and modernity 
led to a vision of a pan-German empire, in which the non-German 
nationalities and the lower classes would be denied all claims to 
emancipation or representation. Theories of Aryan-German racial 
excellence, anti-liberalism, and anxiety about social and economic 
changes typify their volkisch concerns, but their occultism was an 
original contribution. Occultism was invoked to endorse the enduring 
validity of an obsolescent and precarious social order. The ideas and 
symbols of ancient theocracies, secret societies, and the mystical 
gnosis of Rosicrucianism, Cabbalism, and Freemasonry were woven 
into the volkisch ideology, in order to prove that the modern world was 
based on false and evil principles and to describe the values and 
institutions of the ideal world. This reliance on semi-religious 
materials for their legitimation demonstrated the need of the Ario- 
sophists for absolute beliefs about the proper arrangement of human 
society: it was also an index of their profound disenchantment with 
the contemporary world. 

As romantic reactionaries and millenarians, the Ariosophists stood 
on the margin of practical politics, but their ideas and symbols filtered 
through to several anti-Semitic and nationalist groups in late Wilhelmian 
Germany, from which the early Nazi Party emerged in Munich after 
the First World War. This study traces that survival of Ariosophy 
through personal contacts and literary influences. The possibility that 
List and Lanz von Liebenfels may have already had an influence on 
Adolf Fiitler in his pre-war Vienna days is also investigated. Ariosophy 
continued to be fostered in the 1920s by small coteries that propagated 
racist mystery- religions during the Weimar Republic in the hope of a 
national revival. At least two Ariosophists were closely involved with 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Reichsfuhrer-SS Heinrich Himmler in the 1930s, contributing to his 
projects in prehistory, SS order ceremonial, and even to his visionary 
plans for the Greater Germanic Reich in the third millennium. In this 
account of their succession, it is shown how the fantasies of Ariosophy, 
besides being symptoms of anxiety and cultural nostalgia, illuminate 
the ultimate dream-world of the Third Reich. 



6 




PART 1 



The Background 
1 

The Pan-German Vision 



The Austrian state in which both List and Lanz came of age and first 
formulated their ideas was the product of three major political 
changes at the end of the 1860s. These changes consisted in the 
exclusion of Austria from the German Confederation, the adminis- 
trative separation of Hungary from Austria, and the establishment of a 
constitutional monarchy in the ‘Austrian’ or western half of the 
empire. The constitutional changes of 1867 ended absolutism and 
introduced representative government and fulfilled the demands of 
the classical liberals, and the emperor henceforth shared his power 
with a bicameral legislature, elected by a restricted four-class franchise 
under which about 6 per cent of the population voted. Because 
liberalism encouraged free thought and a questioning attitude towards 
institutions, the democratic thesis of liberalism increasingly challenged 
its early oligarchic form. A measure of its appeal is seen in the decline 
of the parliamentary strength of parties committed to traditional 
liberalism and the rise of parties dedicated to radical democracy and 
nationalism, a tendency that was reinforced by the widening of the 
franchise with a fifth voter class in 1896. This development certainly 
favoured the emergence of Pan- Germanism as an extremist parliamen- 
tary force. 

The other political changes in Austria concerned its territorial and 
ethnic composition. Separated from both Germany and Hungary, the 
lands of the Austrian half of the empire formed a crescent-shaped 
territory extending from Dalmatia on the Adriatic coast through the 
hereditary Habsburg lands of Carniola, Carinthia, Styria, Austria, 
Bohemia, and Moravia to the eastern provinces of Galicia and 
Bukovina. The somewhat incongruous geographical arrangement of 
this territory was compounded by the settlement of ten different 
nationalities within its frontiers. Nationality in Austria was defined by 



7 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



the preferred language of the individual. Most of the Germans — 
about 10 million in 1910 — lived in the western provinces of the state 
and constituted about 35 per cent of its 28 million inhabitants. In 
addition to Germans, Austria contained 6,400,000 Czechs (23 per 
cent of the total population), 5,000,000 Poles (18 per cent), 3,500,000 
Ruthenes or Ukrainians ( 1 3 per cent), 1 ,200,000 Slovenes (5 per cent), 
780,000 Serbo-Croats (3per cent), 770,000 Italians (3 per cent), and 
and 275,000 Romanians (1 per cent). The population and nationality 
figures for the provinces of the state indicate more dramatically the 
complexity of ethnic relationships: not only did the relative strength of 
the peoples vary from one province to another, but within the 
boundaries of some of the provinces the Germans were a clear 
majority, while in others they found themselves confronting a single 
united majority race, and in still others they were one nationality 
among several. 1 

After the Prussian-Austrian war of 1866, the Austrian Germans 
were barred from union with their co-nationals outside Austria, and 
were compelled to exist as one people among many in the Habsburg 
empire. Against the background of democratization, some Austrian 
Germans began to fear that the supremacy of German language and 
culture in the empire, a legacy of rationalization procedures dating 
from the late eighteenth century, would be challenged by the non- 
German nationalities of the state. This conflict of loyalties between 
German nationality and Austrian citizenship, often locally sharpened 
by anxieties about Slav or Latin submergence, led to the emergence of 
two distinct, although practically related, currents of German national- 
ism. Fo/foc/i-cultural nationalism concerned itself with raising national 
consciousness among Germans, especially in the large conurbations 
and provinces of mixed nationality, through the foundation of 
educational and defence leagues ( Vereine ) to foster German culture 
and identity within the empire. Pan-Germanism was more overtly 
political, concerned with transforming the political context, rather 
than defending German interests. It began as the creed of the small 
minority of Germans in Austria who refused to accept as permanent 
their separation from the rest of Germany after 1866, and who 
determined to repair this breach of German unity by the only means 
possible after Bismarck’s definitive military victory over France in 
1870: the Anschluss of what they called German- Austria— those 
provinces that had formed part of the German Confederation from 
1815 to 1866 — to the Bismarckian Reich, even though that union 
meant the destruction of the Habsburg monarchy. This idea of 




THE PAN-GERMAN VISION 

making German- Austria a province of the German Reich was called 
kleindeutsch (little German) nationalism, in contrast to grossdeutsch 
(greater German) unity under Vienna, a concept that had declined in 
credibility after 1866. 

By 1885 a considerable number of wttwcA-cultural Vereine were 
operating in the provinces and Vienna. They occupied themselves 
with the discussion and commemoration of figures and events in 
German history, literature and mythology, while investing such 
communal activities as choral singing, gymnastics, sport and mountain- 
climbing with volkisch ritual. In 1886 a federation of these Vereine , the 
Germanenbund, was founded at Salzburg by Anton Langgassner. 
Member Vereine of the federation held Germanic festivals, instituted a 
Germanic calendar, and appealed to all classes to unite in a common 
Germanic Volkstum (nationhood). Their chief social bases lay in the 
provincial intelligentsia and youth. The government regarded such 
nationalism with wariness and actually had the Germanenbund dissolved 
in 1889; it was later re-founded in 1894 as the Bund der Germanen. 

In 1900 more than 160 Vereine of this kind belonged to the 
federation, distributed throughout Vienna, Lower Austria, Styriaand 
Carinthia, Bohemia and Moravia. 2 Given that there was an equal 
number of unaffiliated Vereine , it is probable that between 1 00,000 and 
1 50,000 people were influenced by their propaganda. 3 List formed his 
ideas and political attitudes almost exclusively within this volkisch- 
cultural milieu. During the 1870s and 1880s he wrote for thejournals 
of the movement; he attended the Verein 'Deutsche Geschichte’, the 
Deutscher Tumverein and the rowing club Donauhort at Vienna, and the 
Verein ‘Deutsches Haus’ at Brno; and he was actively involved in the 
festivals of the Bund der Germanen in the 1890s. It is against this ongoing 
mission of the volkisch-cuhurA Vereine in the latter decades of the 
century that one may understand the inspiration and appeal of his 
nationalist novels and plays in the pre-occult phase of his literary 
output between 1880 and 1900. 

The Pan-German movement originated as an expression of youthful 
ideals among the student fraternities of Vienna, Graz, and Prague 
during the 1860s. Initially formed in the 1840s, these Austrian 
fraternities were modelled on the German Burschenschaften (student 
clubs) of the Vormdrz period (the conservative era between 1815 and 
the bourgeois liberal revolution of March 1848), which had developed 
a tradition of radical nationalism, romantic ritual and secrecy, while 
drawing inspiration from the teachings of Friedrich Ludwig Jahn 
(1778-1850), the volkisch prophet of athleticism, German identity, and 



9 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

national unity. Certain fraternities, agitated by the problem of 
German nationality in the Austrian state after 1 866, began to advocate 
kleindeutsch nationalism; that is, incorporation of German- Austria into 
the German Reich. They glorified Bismarck, praised the Prussian 
army and Kaiser Wilhelm I, wore blue cornflowers (supposed to be 
Bismarck’s favourite flower) and sang ‘Die Wacht am Rhein’ at their mass 
meetings and banquets. This cult of Prussophilia led to a worship of 
force and a contempt for humanitarian law and justice. 

Georg von Schonerer (1842-1921) first associated himself with this 
movement when he joined a federation of kleindeutsch fraternides in 
1876 at Vienna. 4 Without the leadership of Schonerer, Pan-Germanism 
would have remained an amorphous ‘tendency’ among politically 
naive student, volkisch, and working-class groups. His ideas, his 
temperament, and his talent as an agitator, shaped the character and 
destiny of Austrian Pan-Germanism, thereby creating a revolutionary 
movement that embraced populist anti-capitalism, anti- liberalism, 
anti-Semitism and prussophile German nationalism. Having first 
secured election to the Reichsrat in 1873, Schonerer pursued a radical 
democratic line in parliament in common with other progressives of 
the Left until about 1878. By then he had begun to demand the 
economic and political union of German-Austria with the German 
Reich, and from 1883 he published a virulently nationalist newspaper, 
Unverfalschte Deutsche Worte [Unadulterated German Words], to proclaim 
his views. The essence of Schonererite Pan-Germanism was not its 
demand for national unity, political democracy, and social reform 
(aspects of its programme which it shared with the conventional 
radical nationalists in parliament), but its racism — that is, the idea that 
blood was the sole criterion of all civic rights. 

The Pan-German movement had become a minor force in Austrian 
politics in the mid- 1880s but then languished after the conviction of 
Schonerer in 1888 for assault; deprived of his political rights for five 
years, he was effectively removed from parliamentary activity. Not 
until the late 1890s did Pan-Germanism again attain the status of a 
popular movement in response to several overt challenges to German 
interests within the empire. It was a shock for those who took German 
cultural predominance for granted when the government ruled in 
1895 that Slovene classes should be introduced in the exclusively 
German school at Celje in Carniola. This minor controversy assumed 
a symbolical significance among German nationalists out of all 
proportion to its local implications. Then in April 1897 the Austrian 
premier, Count Casimir Badeni, introduced his controversial language 



10 




THE PAN-GERMAN VISION 



decrees, which ruled that all officials in Bohemia and Moravia should 
be able to speak both Czech and German, a qualification that would 
have clearly discriminated against Germans. These decrees provoked 
a nationalist furore throughout the empire. The democratic German 
parties and the Pan-Germans, unable to force the government to 
cancel the language legislation, obstructed all parliamentary business, 
a practice which continued until 1900. When successive premiers 
resorted to rule by decree, the disorder overflowed from parliament 
onto the streets of the major cities. During the summer of 1897 bloody 
conflicts between rioting mobs and the police and even the army 
threatened to plunge the country into civil war. Hundreds of German 
Vereine were dissolved by the police as a threat to public order. It is in 
this background of events involving parliamentary breakdown, public 
disorder, rampant German chauvinism, and the electoral gains of the 
Pan-Germans in 1901, that one may find the roots of a new rancorous 
nationalist mood among Germans in the decade that witnessed the 
emergence of Ariosophy. 5 

The underlying theme of these varied political protests was the 
attempt on the part of many Austrian Germans to fight a rearguard 
action against Slav demands for political and national expression and 
unity within the increasingly anachronistic multi-national Habsburg 
empire. Not all Pan-German voters expressly wanted the economic 
and political union of German-Austria with the German Reich as 
proposed by Schonerer’s programme. Their reasons for supporting 
the party often amounted to little more than the electoral expression 
of a desire to bolster German national interests within the empire, in 
common with the myriad volkisch-cuhural Vereine. For wherever they 
looked in the course of the past decade, Austrian Germans could 
perceive a steadily mounting Slav challenge to the traditional pre- 
dominance of German cultural and political interests: the Celje school 
controversy, the Badeni language ordinances and the menacing 
implications of universal male suffrage (finally introduced in 1907) 
represented climaxes in this continuing and unresolved issue. Many 
Austrian Germans regarded this political challenge as an insult to their 
major owning, tax-paying and investment role in the economy and the 
theme of the German Besitzstand (property-owning class) in the empire 
was generally current at the turn of the century. Lanz’s early Ostara 
issues and other articles addressed themselves to the problems of 
universal suffrage and the German Besitzstand. Both List and Lanz 
condemned all parliamentary politics and called for the subjection of 
all the nationalities in the empire to German rule. The concerns of 



11 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Ariosophy were clearly related to this late nineteenth-century German- 
Slav conflict in Austria. 

The strident anti-Catholicism of Ariosophy may also be traced to 
the influence of the Pan-German movement. Although predisposed 
towards the volkisch paganism of the Germanenbund, Schonerer had 
begun by 1 8 90 to think of a denominational policy by which he might 
counter the Catholic Church, which he regarded as alien to Germandom 
and a powerful electoral force. The episcopate advised the emperor, 
the parish priests formed a network of effective propagandists in the 
country, and the Christian Social party had deprived him of his earlier 
strongholds among the rural and semi-urban populations of Lower 
Austria and Vienna. He thought that a Protestant conversion move- 
ment could help to emphasize in the mind of the German public the 
association of Slavdom — after 1897 hated and feared by millions— 
with Catholicism, the dynasty, and the Austrian state. The conservative- 
clerical- Slavophile governments since 1879 had indeed made the 
emergence of a populistic and anti-Catholic German reaction plausible 
and perhaps inevitable. Many Germans thought that the Catholic 
hierarchy was anti-German, and in Bohemia there was resentment at 
the number of Czech priests who had been given German parishes. In 
order to exploit these feelings, Schonerer launched his Los von Rom 
(break with Rome) campaign in 1898. 6 

Having liaised with Protestant missionary societies in Germany, 
Schonerer publicly associated the Pan-German movement with a new 
Lutheran movement, which accounted for about 30,000 Protestant 
conversions in Bohemia, Styria, Carinthia, and Vienna between 1 899 
and 1910. The alliance remained uneasy: most of the volkisch leagues 
were strongly opposed to the movement, while other Pan-Germans 
denounced the Los von Rom campaign as a variation of old-time 
clericalism. For their part, the missionary pastors complained that the 
political implications of conversion alienated many religious people 
who sought a new form of Christian faith, while those who were 
politically motivated did not really care about religion. The rate of 
annual conversions began to decline in 1902, and by 1910 had 
returned to the figure at which it had stood before the movement 
began. Although a movement of the ethnic borderlands, its social 
bases were principally defined by the professional and commercial 
middle classes. The greatest success of the Los von Rom movement 
therefore coincided chronologically and geographically with the 
prestige of the Pan-German party: the campaign neither widened the 
appeal of Pan-Germanism nor significantly weakened the Catholic 
Church. 7 



12 




THE PAN-GERMAN VISION 

Although the Los vom Rom movement was a political failure, it 
highlights the anti-Catholic sentiment that prevailed among many 
Austrian Germans during the 1900s. This mood was an essential 
element of Ariosophy. List cast the Catholic Church in the role of 
principal antagonist in his account of the Armanist dispensation in the 
mythological Germanic past. 8 He also conflated the clericalism, the 
conservatism and the Slav interests of the Austrian governments since 
1879 into the hateful adversary of Germanism — the Great International 
Party. This wholly imaginary organization was held responsible for all 
political developments contrary to German nationalist interests in 
Austria and impugned as a Catholic conspiracy. 9 Lanz also appears to 
have been caught up in this current of feeling. He abandoned his 
Cistercian novitiate in a profoundly anti-Catholic mood in 1899, 
joined the Pan-German movement, and is said to have converted 
briefly to Protestantism. 10 Although going los von Rom was but a short 
intermediate stage in his evolution towards his own race cult of 
Ariosophy, this step indicates the signal importance of Pan-Germanism 
in his ideological development. 

Racism was a vital element in the Ariosophists’ account of national 
conflict and the virtue of the Germans. An early classic on the 
superiority of the Nordic- Aryan race and a pessimistic prediction of its 
submergence by non- Aryan peoples was Arthur de Gobineau’s 
essay.' 1 Although this work evoked no immediate response, its 
notions were echoed and its conclusions reversed by numerous 
propagandists for the superiority of Germandom towards the end of 
the century. When the Social Darwinists invoked the inevitability of 
biological struggle in human life, it was proposed that the Aryans (or 
really the Germans) need not succumb to the fate of deterioration, but 
could prevail against the threats of decline and contamination by 
maintaining their racial purity. This shrill imperative to crude struggle 
between the races and eugenic reform found broad acceptance in 
Germany around the turn of the century: the principal works of Ernst 
Krause, Otto Ammon, Ludwig Wilser, and Ludwig Woltmann, all 
Social Darwinists, were all published between the early 1890s and 
1910. 12 

Ernst Haeckel, the eminent zoologist, warned repeatedly against 
the mixing of races and founded the Monist League in 1 906 in order to 
popularize this racist version of Social Darwinism among Germans. 13 
These scientific formulations of racism in the context of physical 
anthropology and zoology lent conviction to volkisch nationalist 
prejudice in both Germany and Austria. List borrowed stock racist 



13 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

notions from this movement, while Lanz contributed to Das freie Wort 
[The Free Word , est. 1901], a semi-official journal of the Monist League, 
and to Woltmann's Politisch-Anthropologische Revue [Political-Anthropo- 
logical Review, est. 1902]. The central importance of ‘Aryan’ racism in 
Ariosophy, albeit compounded by occult notions deriving from 
theosophy, may be traced to the racial concerns of Social Darwinism 
in Germany. 

If some aspects of Ariosophy can be related to the problems of 
German nationalism in the multi-national Habsburg empire at the 
end of the nineteenth century, others have a more local source in 
Vienna. Unlike the ethnic borderlands, Vienna was traditionally a 
German city, the commercial and cultural centre of the Austrian state. 
However, by 1900, rapid urbanization of its environs, coupled with 
the immigration of non-German peoples, was transforming its 
physical appearance and, in some central districts, its ethnic compo- 
sition. Old photographs bear an eloquent testimony to the rapid 
transformation of the traditional face of Vienna at the end of the 
nineteenth century. During the 1850s the old star-shaped glacis of 
Prince Eugene was demolished to make way for the new Ringstrasse, 
with its splendid new palais and public buildings. A comparison of 
views before and after the development indicates the loss of the 
intimate, aesthetic atmosphere of a royal residence amid spacious 
parkland in favour of a brash and monumental metropolitanism. It 
may be that List rejected urban culture and celebrated rural-medieval 
idylls as a reaction to the new Vienna. 

Between 1860 and 1900 the population of the city had increased 
nearly threefold, resulting in a severe housing shortage. By 1900 no 
less than 43 per cent of the population were living in dwellings of two 
rooms or less, while homelessness and destitution were widespread. 14 
Parallel with this process of overcrowding and slum creation was the 
large immigration ofjews from Galicia. In 1857 only some 6,000 Jews 
had resided in the capital, but by 1910 this number had risen to 
175,000, which was more than 8 per cent of the total city population; 
in certain districts they accounted for 20 per cent of the local 
residents. 15 These eastern Jews wore traditional costume and made a 
scant living as poor tradesmen or pedlars. Germans with volkisch 
attitudes would have certainly regarded this new influx as a serious 
threat to the ethnic character of the capital. An example of this 
reaction is found in Hitler’s description of his first encounter with 
such Jews in the Inner City. 16 Given the Ariosophists’ preoccupation 



14 




THE PAN-GERMAN VISION 

with the growing predominance of non-German nationalities in 
Austria, such local changes would have furnished palpable evidence 
of the problem. 

It remains to be asked if Ariosophy’s assimilation of occult notions 
deriving from theosophy also had a local source in Vienna. Although a 
Theosophical Society had been established there in 1886, no German 
translation of the movement’s basic text, The Secret Doctrine, was 
published until 1901. The 1900s subsequently witnessed a wave of 
German theosophical publishing. But while the date of the ariosophical 
texts (from 1907 onwards) relates to the contemporary vogue of the 
theosophical movement in Central Europe, it is not easy to ascribe a 
specifically Austrian quality to the wftuc/i- theosophical phenomenon. 
Mystical and religious speculations also jostled with quasi-scientific 
forms (e.g. Social Darwinism, Monism) of volkisch ideology in Germany. 
It is furthermore significant that several important ariosophical 
writers and many List Society supporters lived outside Austria. 17 It is 
thus correct to say that, while the volkisch racism, the anti-Catholicism, 
and the anti-modernity of Ariosophy relate to specifically Austrian 
factors, its involvement with theosophy indicates a more general 
phenomenon. Given the large number of volkisch leagues in Vienna, it 
is not so remarkable that a small coterie should have exploited the 
materials of a new sectarian doctrine as fresh ‘proof’ for their theories 
of Aryan-German superiority. The particular appropriateness of 
theosophy for a vindication of elitism and racism is reserved for a later 
discussion. 18 

To conclude: the origins of Ariosophy in Vienna may be related to 
the problems of modernity and nationalism in the Habsburg empire 
at the beginning of the century. Although still outwardly brilliant and 
prosperous, Vienna had become embedded in the past. In the 
modernizing process, that ‘old, cosmopolitan, feudal and peasant 
Europe’ — which had anachronistically survived in the territory of the 
empire — was swiftly disappearing. Some bourgeois and petty bourgeois 
in particular felt threatened by progress, by the abnormal growth of 
the cities, and by economic concentration. These anxieties were 
compounded by the increasingly bitter quarrels among the nations of 
the empire which were, in their turn, eroding the precarious balance 
of the multi-national state. Such fears gave rise to defensive ideologies, 
offered by their advocates as panaceas for a threatened world. That 
some individuals sought a sense of status and security in doctrines of 
German identity and racial virtue may be seen as reaction to the 
medley of nationalities at the heart of the empire. Writing of his 



15 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

feelings towards non-Germans in contemporary Vienna, Hitler had 
written: 

Widerwartig war mir das Rassenkonglomerat, das die Reichshauptstadt zeigte, 
widerwartig dieses game Volkergemischvon Tschechen, Polen, Ungam, Ruthenen, 
Serben und Kroaten . . . Mir erschien die Riesenstadt als die Verkorperung der 
Blutschande . 19 

[I found the racial conglomeration of the Imperial capital disgusting, 
this whole medley of Czechs, Poles, Hungarians, Ruthenians, Serbs 
and Croats was disgusting . . . The city seemed the very embodiment of 
racial infamy.] 

It is a tragic paradox that the colourful variety of peoples in the 
Habsburg empire, a direct legacy of its dynastic supra-national past, 
should have nurtured the germination of genocidal racist doctrines in 
a new age of nationalism and social change. 



16 




2 



The Modern German Occult Revival 
1880-1910 



Occultism has its basis in a religious way of thinking, the roots of 
which stretch back into antiquity and which may be described as the 
Western esoteric tradition. Its principal ingredients have been identified 
as Gnosticism, the Hermetic treatises on alchemy and magic, Neo- 
Platonism, and the Cabbala, all originating in the eastern Mediterranean 
area during the first few centuries AD. Gnosticism properly refers to 
the beliefs of certain heretical sects among the early Christians that 
claimed to posses gnosis, or special esoteric knowledge of spiritual 
matters. Although their various doctrines differed in many respects, 
two common Gnostic themes exist: first, an oriental (Persian) dualism, 
according to which the two realms of Good and Evil, Light and 
Darkness, order and chaos are viewed as independent battling 
principles; and second, the conviction that this material world is 
utterly evil, so that man can be saved only by attaining the gnosis of the 
higher realm. The Gnostic sects disappeared in the fourth century, but 
their ideas inspired the dualistic Manichaean religion of the second 
century and also the Hermetica. These Greek texts were composed in 
Egypt between the third and fifth centuries and developed a synthesis 
of Gnostic ideas, Neoplatonism and cabbalistic theosophy. Since 
these mystical doctrines arose against a background of cultural and 
social change, a correlation has been noted between the proliferation 
of the sects and the breakdown of the stable agricultural order of the 
late Roman Empire . 1 

When the basic assumptions of the medieval world were shaken by 
new modes of enquiry and geographical discoveries in the fifteenth 
century, Gnostic and Hermetic ideas enjoyed a brief revival. Prominent 
humanists and scholar magicians edited the old classical texts during 
the Renaissance and thus created a modern corpus of occult specu- 
lation. But after the triumph of empiricism in the seventeenth-century 



17 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



scientific revolution, such ideas became the preserve of only a few 
antiquarians and mystics. By the eighteenth century these unorthodox 
religious and philosophical concerns were well defined as ‘occult’, 
inasmuch as they lay on the outermost fringe of accepted forms of 
knowledge and discourse. However, a reaction to the rationalist 
Enlightenment, taking the form of a quickening romantic temper, an 
interest in the Middle Ages and a desire for mystery, encouraged a 
revival of occultism in Europe from about 1770. 

Germany boasted several renowned scholar magicians in the 
Renaissance, and a number of secret societies devoted to Rosicrucianism, 
theosophy, and alchemy also flourished there from the seventeenth to 
the nineteenth centuries. However, the impetus for the neo-romantic 
occult revival of the nineteenth century did not arise in Germany. It is 
attributable rather to the reaction against the reign of materialist, 
rationalist and positivist ideas in the utilitarian and industrial cultures 
of America and England. The modern German occult revival owes its 
inception to the popularity of theosophy in the Anglo-Saxon world 
during the 1880s. Here theosophy refers to the international sectarian 
movement deriving from the activities and writings of the Russian 
adventuress and occultist, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (1831-91). Her 
colourful life and travels in the 1850s and 1860s, her clairvoyant 
powers and penchant for supernatural phenomena, her interest in 
American spiritualism during the 1870s, followed by her foundation 
of the Theosophical Society at New York in 1875 and the subsequent 
removal of its operations to India between 1879 and 1885, have all 
been fully documented in several biographies. 2 Here the essentials of 
theosophy as a doctrine will be summarized before tracing its 
penetration of Central Europe. 

Madame Blavatsky s first book, Isis Unveiled (1877), was less an 
outline of her new religion than a rambling tirade against the 
rationalist and materialistic culture of modern Western civilization. 
Her use of traditional esoteric sources to discredit present-day beliefs 
showed clearly how much she hankered after ancient religious truths 
in defiance of contemporary' agnosticism and modern science. In this 
enterprise she drew upon a range of secondary sources treating of 
pagan mythology and mystery religions, Gnosticism, the Hermetica, 
and the arcane lore of the Renaissance scholars, the Rosicrucians and 
odier secret fraternities. W. E. Coleman has shown that her work 
comprises a sustained and frequent plagiarism of about one hundred 
contemporary texts, chiefly relating to ancient and exotic religions, 
demonology, Freemasonry and the case for spiritualism. 3 Behind 

18 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 

these diverse traditions, Madame Blavatsky discerned the unique 
source of their inspiration: the occult lore of ancient Egypt. Her 
fascination with Egypt as the fount of all wisdom arose from her 
enthusiastic reading of the English author Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton. 
His novel The Last Days of Pompeii (1834) had been conceived of as a 
narrative of the impact of the Isis cult in Rome during the first century 
AD. His later works, Zanoni ( 1 842), A Strange Story ( 1 862), and The Coming 
Race (1871), also dwelt on esoteric initiation and secret fraternities 
dedicated to occult knowledge in a way which exercised an extra- 
ordinary fascination on the romantic mind of the nineteenth century. 
It is ironical that early theosophy should have been principally 
inspired by English occult fiction, a fact made abundantly clear by 
Liljegren’s comparative textual studies. 4 

Only after Madame Blavatsky and her followers moved to India in 
1 8 7 9 did theosophy receive a more systematic formulation. At the new 
headquarters of the Theosophical Society in Madras she wrote The 
Secret Doctrine (1888). This work betrayed her plagiarism again but now 
her sources were mainly contemporary works on Hinduism and 
modern science. 5 Her new book was presented as a commentary on a 
secret text called the ‘Stanzas of Dzyan’, which she claimed to have 
seen in a subterranean Himalayan monastery. This new interest in 
Indian lore may reflect her sensitivity to changes in the direction of 
scholarship: witness the contemporary importance of Sanskrit as a 
basis for the comparative study of so-called Aryan languages under 
Franz Bopp and Max Muller. Now the East rather than Egypt was seen 
as the source of ancient wisdom. Later theosophical doctrine conse- 
quendy displays a marked similarity to the religious tenets of 
Hinduism. 

The Secret Doctrine claimed to describe the activities of God from the 
beginning of one period of universal creation until its end, a cyclical 
process which continues indefinitely over and over again. The story 
related how the present universe was born, whence it emanated, what 
powers fashion it, whither it is progressing, and what it all means. The 
first volume (Cosmogenesis) oudined the scheme according to which 
the primal unity of an unmanifest divine being differentiates itself into 
a multiformity of consciously evolving beings that gradually fill the 
universe. The divine being manifested itself initially through an 
emanation and three subsequent Logoi: these cosmic phases created 
time, space, and matter, and were symbolized by a series of sacred 
Hindu sigils 0 0 ( 1 ) 0 ® . All subsequent creation occurred in 
conformity with the divine plan, passing through seven ‘rounds’ or 



19 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



evolutionary cycles. In the first round the universe was characterized 
by the predominance of fire, in the second by air, in the third by 
water, in the fourth by earth, and in the others by ether. This sequence 
reflected the cyclical fall of the universe from divine grace over the first 
four rounds and its following redemption over the next three, before 
everything contracted once more to the point of primal unity for the 
start of a new major cycle. Madame Blavatsky illustrated the stages of 
the cosmic cycle with a variety of esoteric symbols, including triangles, 
triskelions, and swastikas. So extensive was her use of this latter 
Eastern sign of fortune and fertility that she included it in her design 
for the seal of the Theosophical Society. The executive agent of the 
entire cosmic enterprise was called Fohat, ‘a universal agent employed 
by the Sons of God to create and uphold our world’. The manifestations 
of this force were, according to Blavatsky, electricity and solar energy, 
and ‘the objectivised thought of the gods’. This electro- spiritual force 
was in tune with contemporary vitalist and scientific thought. 

The second volume (Anthropogenesis) attempted to relate man to 
this grandiose vision of the cosmos. Not only was humanity assigned 
an age of far greater antiquity than that conceded by science, but it was 
also integrated into a scheme of cosmic, physical, and spiritual 
evolution. These theories were partly derived from late nineteenth- 
century scholarship concerning palaeontology, inasmuch as Blavatsky 
adopted a racial theory of human evolution. She extended her cyclical 
doctrine with the assertion that each round witnessed the rise and fall 
of seven consecutive root-races, which descended on the scale of 
spiritual development from the first to the fourth, becoming increasingly 
enmeshed in the material world (the Gnostic notion of a Fall from 
Light into Darkness was quite explicit), before ascending through 
progressively superior root-races from the fifth to the seventh. 
According to Blavatsky, present humanity constituted the fifth root- 
race upon a planet that was passing through the fourth cosmic round, 
so that a process of spiritual advance lay before the species. The fifth 
root-race was called the Aryan race and had been preceded by the 
fourth root-race of the Atlanteans, which had largely perished in a 
flood that submerged their mid-Atlantic continent. The Adanteans 
had wielded psychic forces with which our race was not familiar, their 
gigantism enabled them to build Cyclopean structures, and they 
possessed a superior technology based upon the successful exploitation 
of Fohat. The three earlier races of the present planetary round were 
proto-human, consisting of the first Astral root- race which arose in an 
invisible, imperishable and sacred land and the second Hyperborean 



20 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 



root-race which had dwelt on a vanished polar continent. The third 
Lemurian root-race flourished on a continent which had lain in the 
Indian Ocean. It was probably due to this race’s position at or near the 
spiritual nadir of the evolutionary racial cycle that Blavatsky charged 
the Lemurians with racial miscegenation entailing a kind of Fall and 
the breeding of monsters . 6 

A further important theosophical tenet was the belief in reincarnation 
and karma, also taken from Hinduism. The individual human ego was 
regarded as a tiny fragment of the divine being. Through reincarnation 
each ego pursued a cosmic journey through the rounds and the root- 
races which led it towards eventual reunion with the divine being 
whence it had originally issued. This path of coundess rebirths also 
recorded a story of cyclical redemption: the initial debasement of the 
ego was followed by its gradual sublimation to the point of identity 
with God. The process of reincarnation was fulfilled according to the 
principle of karma, whereby good acts earned their performer 
a superior reincarnation and bad acts an inferior reincarnation. This 
belief not only provided for everyone’s participation in the fantastic 
worlds of remote prehistory in the root- race scheme, but also enabled 
one to conceive of salvation through reincarnation in the ultimate 
root-races which represented the supreme state of spiritual evolution: 
‘we men shall in the future take our places in the skies as Lords of 
planets, Regents of galaxies and wielders of fire-mist [Fohat]’. This 
chiliastic vision supplemented the psychological appeal of belonging 
to a vast cosmic order . 7 

Besides its racial emphasis, theosophy also stressed the principle of 
elitism and the value of hierarchy. Blava.tsky claimed she received her 
initiation into the doctrines from two exalted mahatmas or masters 
called Morya and Root Hoomi, who dwelt in a remote and secret 
Himalayan fastness. These adepts were not gods but rather advanced 
members of our own evolutionary group, who had decided to impart 
their wisdom to the rest of Aryan mankind through their chosen 
representative, Madame Blavatsky. Like her masters, she also claimed 
an exclusive authority on the basis of her occult knowledge or gnosis. 
Her account of prehistory frequently invoked the sacred authority of 
elite priesthoods among the root- races of the past. When the Lemurians 
had fallen into iniquity and sin, only a hierarchy of the elect remained 
pure in spirit. This remnant became the Lemuro- Atlantean dynasty of 
priest-kings who took up their abode on the fabulous island of 
Shamballah in the Gobi Desert. These leaders were linked with 
Blavatsky’s own masters, who were the instructors of the fifth Aryan 
root-race . 8 



21 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Despite its tortuous argument and the frequent contradictions 
which arose from the plethora of pseudo- scholarly references through- 
out the work, The Secret Doctrine may be summarized in terms of three 
basic principles. Firstly, the fact of a God, who is omnipresent, eternal, 
boundless and immutable. The instrument of this deity is Fohat, an 
electro-spiritual force which impresses the divine scheme upon the 
cosmic substance as the ‘laws of nature’. Secondly, the rule of 
periodicity, whereby all creation is subject to an endless cycle of 
destruction and rebirth. These rounds always terminate at a level 
spiritually superior to their starting-point. Thirdly, there exists a 
fundamental unity between all individual souls and the deity, between 
the microcosm and the macrocosm. 9 But it was hardly this plain 
theology that guaranteed theosophy its converts. Only the hazy 
promise of occult initiation shimmering through its countless quo- 
tations from ancient beliefs, lost apocryphal writings, and the traditional 
Gnostic and Hermetic sources of esoteric wisdom can account for the 
success of her doctrine and the size of her following amongst the 
educated classes of several countries. 

How can one explain the enthusiastic reception of Blavatsky’s ideas 
by significant numbers of Europeans and Americans from the 1880s 
onwards? Theosophy offered an appealing mixture of ancient religious 
ideas and new concepts borrowed from the Darwinian theory of 
evolution and modern science. This syncretic faith thus possessed the 
power to comfort certain individuals whose traditional outlook had 
been upset by the discrediting of orthodox religion, by the very 
rationalizing and de- mystifying progress of science and by the culturally 
dislocative impact of rapid social and economic change in the late 
nineteenth century. George L. Mosse has noted that theosophy 
typified the wave of anti-positivism sweeping Europe at the end of the 
century and observed that its outre notions made a deeper impression 
in Germany than in other European countries. 10 

Although a foreign hybrid combining romantic Egyptian revivalism, 
American spiritualism and Hindu beliefs, theosophy enjoyed a 
considerable vogue in Germany and Austria. Its advent is best 
understood within a wider neo-romantic protest movement in Wil- 
helmian Germany known as Lebensreform (life reform). This movement 
represented a middle-class attempt to palliate the ills of modern life, 
deriving from the growth of the cities and industry. A variety of 
alternative life-styles — including herbal and natural medicine, 
vegetarianism, nudism and self-sufficient rural communes — were 
embraced by small groups of individuals who hoped to restore 



22 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 

themselves to a natural existence. The political atmosphere of the 
movement was apparently liberal and left-wing with its interest in land 
reform, but there were many overlaps with the volkisch movement. 
Marxian critics have even interpreted it as mere bourgeois escapism 
from the consequences of capitalism. 1 1 Theosophy was appropriate to 
the mood of Lebensreform and provided a philosophical rationale for 
some of its groups. 

In July 1884 the first German Theosophical Society was established 
under the presidency of Wilhelm Hiibbe-Schleiden (1846-1916) at 
Elberfeld, where Blavatsky and her chief collaborator, Henry Steel 
Olcott, were staying with their theosophical friends, the Gebhards. At 
this time Hiibbe-Schleiden was employed as a senior civil servant at 
the Colonial Office in Hamburg. He had travelled widely, once 
managing an estate in West Africa and was a prominent figure in the 
political lobby for an expanded German overseas empire. Olcott and 
Hiibbe-Schleiden travelled to Munich and Dresden to make contact 
with scattered theosophists and so lay the basis for a German 
organization. It has been suggested that this hasty attempt to found a 
German movement sprang from Blavatsky’s desire for a new centre 
after a scandal involving charges of charlatanism against the theosophists 
at Madras early in 1884. Blavatsky’s methods of producing occult 
phenomena and messages from her masters had aroused suspicion in 
her entourage and led eventually to an enquiry and an unfavourable 
report upon her activities by the London Society for Psychical 
Research. Unfortunately for Hiibbe-Schleiden, his presidency lapsed 
when the formal German organization dissolved, once the scandal 
became more widely publicized following the exodus of the theo- 
sophists from India in April 1885. 12 Henceforth Blavatsky lived in 
London and found eager new pupils amongst the upper classes of 
Victorian England. 

In 1886 Hiibbe-Schleiden stimulated a more serious awareness of 
occultism in Germany through the publication of a scholarly monthly 
periodical, Die Sphinx , which was concerned with a discussion of 
spiritualism, psychical research, and paranormal phenomena from a 
scientific point of view. Its principal contributors were eminent 
psychologists, philosophers and historians. Here Max Dessoir 
expounded hypnotism, while Eduard von Hartmann developed a 
philosophy of ‘individualism’, according to which the ego survived 
death as a discarnate entity, against a background of Kantian thought, 
Christian theology, and spiritualist speculations. Carl du Prel, the 
psychical researcher, and his colleague Lazar von Hellenbach, who 



23 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

had held seances with the famous American medium Henry Slade in 
Vienna, both contributed essays in a similar vein. Another important 
member of the Sphinx circle was Karl Kiesewetter, whose studies in the 
history of the post-Renaissance esoteric tradition brought knowledge 
of the scholar magicians, the early modern alchemists and contem- 
porary occultism to a wider audience. While not itself theosophical, 
Hubbe-Schleiden’s periodical was a powerful element in the German 
occult revival until it ceased publication in 1 895. 

Besides this scientific current of occultism, there arose in the 1 890s 
a broader German theosophical movement, which derived mainly 
from the popularizing efforts of Franz Hartmann (1838-1912). 
Hartmann had been born in Donauworth and brought up in 
Kempten, where his father held office as a court doctor. After military 
service with a Bavarian artillery regiment in 1859, Hartmann began 
his medical studies at Munich University. While on vacation in France 
during 1865, he took a post as ship’s doctor on a vessel bound for the 
United States, where he spent the next eighteen years of his life. After 
completing his training at St Louis he opened an eye clinic and 
practised there until 1870. He then travelled round Mexico, settled 
briefly at New Orleans before continuing to Texas in 1873, and in 
1878 went to Georgetown in Colorado, where he became coroner in 
1882. Besides his medical practice he claimed to have a speculative 
interest in gold- and silver-mining. By the beginning of the 1 870s he 
had also become interested in American spiritualism, attending the 
seances of the movement’s leading figures such as Mrs Rice Holmes 
and Kate Wentworth, while immersing himself in the writings ofjudge 
Edmonds and Andrewjackson Davis. However, following his discovery 
of Isis Unveiled l, theosophy replaced spiritualism as his principal 
diversion. He resolved to visit the theosophists at Madras, travelling 
there by way of California, Japan and South-East Asia in late 1883. 
While Blavatsky and Olcott visited Europe in early 1884, Hartmann 
was appointed acting president of the Society during their absence. 
He remained at the Society headquarters until the theosophists 
finally left India in April 1 885. 13 

Hartmann’s works were firstly devoted to Rosicrucian initiates, 
Paracelsus, Jakob Boehme and other topics in the Western esoteric 
tradition, and were published in America and England between 1 884 
and 1891. However, once he had established himself as a director of a 
Lebensreform sanatorium at Hallein near Salzburg upon his return to 
Europe in 1885, Hartmann began to disseminate the new wisdom of 
the East to his own countrymen. In 1889 he founded, together with 



24 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 



Alfredo Pioda and Countess Constance Wachtmeister, the close 
friend of Blavatsky, a theosophical lay-monastery at Ascona, a place 
noted for its many anarchist experiments. 14 From 1892 translations of 
Indian sacred texts and Blavatsky 1 s writings were printed in his 
periodical, Lotusbluthen [Lotus Blossoms] ( 1 892-1 900), which was the first 
German publication to sport the theosophical swastika upon its cover. 
In the second half of this decade the first peak in German theosophical 
publishing occurred. Wilhelm Friedrich of Leipzig, the publishers of 
Hartmann’s magazine, issued a twelve- volume book series, Bibliothek 
esoterischer Schriften [Library of Esoteric Writings] ( 1898-1 900), while Hugo 
Goring, a theosophist in Weimar, edited a thirty-volume book series, 
Theosophische Schriften [ Theosophical Writings] (1894-96). Both series 
consisted of German translations from Blavatsky’s successors in 
England, Annie Besant and Charles Leadbeater, together with original 
studies by Hartmann and Hubbe-Schleiden. The chief concern of 
these small books lay with abstruse cosmology, karma, spiritualism 
and the actuality of the hidden mahatmas. In addition to this output 
must be mentioned Hartmann’s translations of the Bhagavad Gita, the 
Tao-Te-King and the Tattwa Bodha, together with his own monographs 
on Buddhism, Christian mysticism and Paracelsus. 

Once Hartmann’s example had provided the initial impetus, 
another important periodical sprang up. In 1896 Paul Zillmann 
founded the Metaphysische Rundschau [Metaphysical Review], a monthly 
periodical which dealt with many aspects of the esoteric tradition, 
while also embracing new parapsychological research as a successor to 
Die Sphinx. Zillmann, who lived at Gross- Lichterfelde near Berlin, was 
an executive committee member of a new German Theosophical 
Society founded under Hartmann’s presidency at Berlin in August 
1896, when the American theosophists Katherine Tingley, E. T. 
Hargrove and C. F. Wright were travelling through Europe to drum 
up overseas support for their movement. 15 Zillmann’s own studies 
and the articles in his periodical betrayed a marked eclecticism: 
contributions on yoga, phrenology, astrology, animal magnetism and 
hypnotism jostled with reprints of the medieval German mystics, a 
late eighteenth-century rosicrucian- alchemical treatise, and the works 
of the modern French occultist Gerard Encausse (Papus). Hartmann 
supplied a fictional story about his discovery of a secret Rosicrucian 
monastery in the Bavarian Alps, which fed the minds of readers with 
romantic notions of adepts in the middle of modern Europe. 16 
Zillmann was so inspired by the early nineteenth-century mystic 
Eckhartshausen and his ideas for a secret school of illuminates that he 



25 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

founded an occult lodge in early 1897. This Wald-Loge (Forest Lodge) 
was organized into three quasi-masonic grades of initiation. 17 In 
Zillmann’s entourage there worked the occultist Ferdinand Maack, 
devoted to the study of newly discovered rays in the context of his own 
‘dynamosophic’ science and an edition of the traditional Rosicrucian 
texts, the astrologer Albert Kniepf, Indian theosophists and writers on 
the American movements of Christian Science and New Thought. In 
his capacity of publisher, Paul Zillmann was an important link 
between the German occult subculture and the Ariosophists of 
Vienna, whose works he issued under his own imprint between 1906 
and 1908. 

The German Theosophical Society had been established in August 
1896 as a national branch of the International Theosophical Brother- 
hood, founded by the American theosophists around Willian Quan 
Judge and Katherine Tingley. Theosophy remained a sectarian 
phenomenon in Germany, typified by small and often antagonistic 
local groups. In late 1 900 the editor of the Neue Metaphysische Rundschau 
received annual reports from branch societies in Berlin, Cottbus, 
Dresden, Essen, Graz, and Leipzig and bemoaned their evident lack 
of mutual fraternity. 18 However, by 1902, the movement displayed 
more cohesion with two principal centres at Berlin and Leipzig, 
supported by a further ten local theosophical societies and about 
thirty small circles throughout Germany and Austria. Paul Raatz, 
editor of the periodical Theosophisches Leben [ Theosophical Life, est. April 
1898], opened a theosophical centre in the capital, while at Leipzig 
there existed another centre associated with Arthur Weber, Hermann 
Rudolf, and Edwin Bohme. 19 Weber had edited his own periodical Dec 
theosophische Wegweiser [The Theosophical Signpost, est. 1898], while from 
the newly- founded Theosophical Central Bookshop he issued a book- 
series, Geheimwissenschaftliche Vortrdge [Occult Lectures] (1902-7), for 
which Rudolph and Bohme contributed many tides. 

While these activities remained largely under the sway of Franz 
Hartmann and Paul Zillmann, mention must be made of another 
theosophical tendency in Germany. In 1902 Rudolf Steiner, a young 
scholar who had studied in Vienna before writing at Weimar a study of 
Goethe’s scientific writings, was made general secretary of the German 
Theosophical Society at Berlin, founded by London theosophists. 
Steiner published a periodical, Luufer, at Berlin from 1903 to 1908. 
However, his mystical Christian interests increasingly estranged him 
from the theosophists under Annie Besant’s strongly Hindu persuasion, 
so that he finally broke away to found his own Anthroposophical 



26 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 

Society in 1912. 20 It may have been a desire to counter Steiner’s 
influence in the occult subculture which led Hartmann to encourage 
the publication of several new periodicals. In 1906 a Theosophical 
Publishing House was established at Leipzig by his young protege 
Hugo Vollrath. 21 Under this imprint a wave of occult magazines 
appeared, including Der Wanderer (1906-8), edited by Arthur Weber; 
Prana (1909-19), edited initially by the astrologer Karl Brandler- 
Pracht and later by Johannes Balzli, secretary of the Leipzig Theo- 
sophical Society; and Theosophie (est. 1910), edited by Hugo Vollrath. 
Astrological periodicals and a related book-series, the Astrologische 
Rundschau [Astrological Review ] and the Astrologische Bibliothek [Astrological 
library ], were also issued here from 1910. Hartmann’s earlier periodical 
was revived in 1 908 under the title Neue Lotusbliiten at the Jaeger press, 
which simultaneously started the Osiris- Bucher, a long book- series 
which introduced many new occultists to the German public. 

Meanwhile, other publishers had been entering the field. Karl 
Rohm, who had visited the English theosophists in London in the late 
1890s, started a firm at Lorch in Wiirttemberg after the turn of the 
century. His publications included reprints of Boehme, Hamann, 
Jung- Stilling, and Alfred Martin Oppel (A.M.O.), translations of Sir 
Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s romances and the works of contemporary 
occultists. 22 Johannes Baum’s New Thought publishing house was 
founded in 1912 and moved to Pfullingen in 1919. Although initially 
concerned with translations of American material, this firm was to 
play a vital role in German esoteric publishing during the 1920s. 23 

In competition with the theosophists at Leipzig was the firm of Max 
Altmann, which had commenced occult publishing in 1905. In July 
1907 Altmann began to issue the popular Zentralblatt fiir Okkultismus, 
edited by D. Georgiewitz-Weitzer, who wrote his own works on 
modern Rosicrucians, alchemy and occult medicine under the 
pseudonym G. W. Surya. The Leipzig bookseller Heinrich Tranker 
issued an occult book- series between 1910 and 1912, which included 
the works of Karl Helmuth and Karl Heise. From 1913 Antonius von 
der Linden began an ambitious book- series, Geheime Wissenschaften 
[Secret Sciences] (1913-20), which consisted of reprints of esoteric texts 
from the Renaissance scholar Agrippa von Nettesheim, the Rosicrucians 
and eighteenth-century alchemists, together with commentaries and 
original texts by modern occultists. From this brief survey it can be 
deduced that German occult publishing activity reached its second 
peak between the years 1906 and 19 12. 24 

If the German occult subculture was well developed before the First 



27 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



World War, Vienna could also look back on a ripe tradition of occult 
interest. The story of this tradition is closely linked with Friedrich 
Eckstein (1861-1939). The personal secretary of the composer Anton 
Bruckner, this brilliant polymath cultivated a wide circle of acquain- 
tance amongst the leading thinkers, writers and musicians of Vienna. 
His penchant for occultism first became evident as a member of a 
Lebensreform group who had practised vegetarianism and discussed the 
doctrines of Pythagoras and the Neo-Platonists in Vienna at the end of 
the 1870s. His esoteric interests later extended to German and 
Spanish mysticism, the legends surrounding the Templars, and the 
Freemasons, Wagnerian mythology, and oriental religions. In 1880 he 
befriended the Viennese mathematician Oskar Simony, who was 
impressed by the metaphysical theories of Professor Friedrich Zollner 
of Leipzig. Zollner had hypothesized that spiritualistic phenomena 
confirmed the existence of a fourth dimension. Eckstein and Simony 
were also associated with the Austrian psychical researcher, Lazar von 
Hellenbach, who performed scientific experiments with mediums in 
a state of trance and contributed to Die Sphinx. Following his cordial 
meeting with Blavatsky in 1886, Eckstein gathered a group of theoso- 
phists in Vienna. During the late 1880s both Franz Hartmann 
and the young Rudolf Steiner were habitues of this circle. Eckstein was 
also acquainted with the mystical group around the illiterate Christian 
pietist, Alois Mailander (1844-1905), who was lionized at Kempten 
and later at Darmstadt by many theosophists, including Hartmann 
and Hubbe-Schleiden. Eckstein corresponded with Gustav Meyrink, 
founder of the Blue Star theosophical lodge at Prague in 1891, who 
later achieved renown as an occult novelist before the First World War. 
In 1887 a Vienna Theosophical Society was founded with Eckstein as 
president and Count Karl zu Leiningen-Billigheim as secretary. 

New groups devoted to occultism arose in Vienna after the turn of 
the century. There existed an Association for Occultism, which 
maintained a lending-library where its members could consult the 
works of Zollner, Hellenbach and du Prel. The Association was close 
to Philipp Maschlufsky, who began to edit an esoteric periodical, Die 
Gnosis, from 1903. The paper was subsequently acquired by Berlin 
theosophists who amalgamated it with Rudolf Steiner’s Luzifer. 26 In 
December 1907 the Sphinx Reading Club, a similar occult study- 
group, was founded by Franz Herndl, who wrote two occult novels 
and was an important member of the List Society. 27 Astrology and 
other occult sciences were also represented in the Austrian capital. 
Upon his return from the United States to his native city, Karl 



28 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 

Brandler-Pracht had founded the First Viennese Astrological Society 
in 1907. 28 According to Josef Greiner’s account of Hider’s youth in 
Vienna, meetings and lectures concerned with astrology, hypnotism 
and other forms of divination were commonplace in the capital before 
the outbreak of the war. 29 Given this occult subculture in Vienna, one 
can better appreciate the local background of the movements around 
Guido von List and Lanz von Liebenfels, whose racist writings after 
1906 owed so much to the modern occult revival in Central Europe. 

Although modern occultism was represented by many varied forms, 
its function appears relatively uniform. Behind the mantic systems of 
astrology, phrenology and palmistry, no less the doctrines of theo- 
sophy, the quasi- sciences of ‘dynamosophy’, animal magnetism and 
hypnotism, and a textual antiquarianism concerning the esoteric 
literature of traditional cabbalists, Rosicrucians, and alchemists, there 
lay a strong desire to reconcile the findings of modern natural science 
with a religious view that could restore man to a position of centrality 
and dignity in the universe. Occult science tended to stress man’s 
intimate and meaningful relationship with the cosmos in terms of 
‘revealed’ correspondences between the microcosm and macrocosm, 
and strove to counter materialist science, with its emphasis upon 
tangible and measurable phenomena and its neglect of invisible 
qualities respecting the spirit and the emotions. These new ‘meta- 
physical’ sciences 30 gave individuals a holistic view of themselves and 
the world in which they lived. This view conferred both a sense of 
participation in a total meaningful order and, through divination, a 
means of planning one’s affairs in accordance with this order. 

The attraction of this world-view was indicated at the beginning of 
this chapter. Occultism had flourished coincident with the decline of 
the Roman Empire and once again at the waning of the Middle Ages. 
It exercised a renewed appeal to those who found the world out of 
joint due to rapid social and ideological changes at the end of the 
nineteenth century. Certain individuals, whose sentiments and 
education inclined them towards an idealistic and romantic perspective, 
were drawn to the modern occult revival in order to find that sense of 
order, which had been shaken by the dissolution of erstwhile 
conventions and beliefs. 

Since Ariosophy originated in Vienna, in response to the problems 
of German nationality and metropolitanism, one must consider the 
particular kind of theosophy which the Ariosophists adapted to their 
volkisch ideas. A theosophical group had been active in the city as 



29 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

early as 1887, but its members were initially inclined towards a 
Biedermeier tradition of pious ‘inwardness’ and self-cultivation under 
the patronage of Marie Lang. Rudolf Steiner was a member of this 
group and his account of its interests indicates how little sympathy 
there existed between the ‘factual’ Buddhistic theosophy of Franz 
Hartmann, who was also in attendance, and the more spiritual 
reflective attitude of the rest of the circle. 31 During the 1890s Viennese 
theosophy appeared to reflect the predilection of the educated classes 
for piety, subjectivism, and the cult of feelings, a mood which 
corresponds to the contemporary vogue of the feuilleton and literary 
impressionism in the arts. Schorske has attempted to relate this 
cultivation of the self to the social plight of the Viennese bourgeoisie at 
the end of the century. He suggests that this class had begun by 
supporting the temple of art as a surrogate form of assimilation into 
the aristocracy, but ended by finding in it an escape, a refuge from the 
collapse of liberalism and the emergence of vulgar mass-movements. 32 
It appears plausible to locate the rise of Viennese theosophy within 
this cultural context. 

When theosophy had become more widely publicized through the 
German publishing houses at the turn of the century, its ideas reached 
a larger audience. By this time theosophy represented a detailed body 
of teachings, as set down in the newly-available translation of 
Blavatsky’s major work Die Geheimlehre [The Secret Doctrine ] (1897-1901) 
and the numerous abridgements and commentaries by Franz 
Hartmann, Hermann Rudolph, Edwin Bohme and others. Whereas 
the earlier Austrian theosophical movement had been defined by the 
mystical Christianity and personal gnosticism of cultivated individuals, 
its later manifestation in Vienna corresponded to a disenchantment 
with Catholicism coupled with the popularization of mythology, 
folklore and comparative religion. The impetus came largely from 
Germany, and both List and Lanz drew their knowledge of theosophy 
from German sources. List was indebted to the Berlin theosophist 
Max Ferdinand von Sebaldt and counted Franz Hartmann, Hugo 
Goring, and Paul Zillmann among his supporters. Zillmann was the 
first to publish both List and Lanz on esoteric subjects. Theosophy in 
Vienna after 1 900 appears to be a quasi-intellectual sectarian religious 
doctrine of German importation, current among persons wavering in 
their religious orthodoxy but who were inclined to a religious 
perspective. 

The attraction of theosophy for List, Lanz, and their supporters 
consisted in its eclecticism with respect to exotic religion, mythology, 



30 




THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 



and esoteric lore, which provided a universal and non-Christian 
perspective upon the cosmos and the origins of mankind, against 
which the sources of Teutonic belief, customs and identity, which 
were germane to volkisch speculation, could be located. Given the 
antipathy towards Catholicism among volkisch nationalists and Pan- 
Germans in Austria at the turn of the century, theosophy commended 
itself as a scheme of religious beliefs which ignored Christianity in 
favour of a melange of mythical traditions and pseudo-scientific 
hypotheses consonant with contemporary anthropology, etymology, 
and the history of ancient cultures. Furthermore, the very structure of 
theosophical thought lent itself to volkisch adoption. The implicit 
elitism of the hidden mahatmas with superhuman wisdom was in tune 
with the longing for a hierarchical social order based on the racial 
mystique of the Volk. The notion of an occult gnosis in theosophy, 
notably its obscuration due to the superimposition of alien (Christian) 
beliefs, and its revival by the chosen few, also accorded with the 
attempt to ascribe a long pedigree to volkisch nationalism, especially in 
view of its really recent origins. In the context of the growth of German 
nationalism in Austria since 1866, we can see how theosophy, 
otherwise only tenuously related to volkisch thought by notions of race 
and racial development, could lend both a religious mystique and a 
universal rationale to the political attitudes of a small minority. 



31 




PART 2 



The Ariosophists of Vienna 



3 

Guido von List 



Guido (VON) List was the first popular writer to combine volkisch 
ideology with occultism and theosophy. He also represented an 
exceptional figure among the volkisch publicists in Germany before 
1914. First of all, he was a native of Vienna, the capital of Habsburg 
Austria, which by the turn of the century had stood outside the 
mainstream of German national development, as exemplified by the 
Bismarckian Reich, for more than three decades. List, moreover, 
belonged to an older generation than most of his pre-war fellow 
ideologues and thus became a cult figure on the eastern edge of the 
German world. He was regarded by his readers and followers as a 
bearded old patriarch and a mystical nationalist guru whose clairvoyant 
gaze had lifted the glorious Aryan and Germanic past of Austria into 
full view from beneath the debris of foreign influences and Christian 
culture. In his books and lectures List invited true Germans to behold 
the clearly discernible remains of a wonderful theocratic Ario- 
German state, wisely governed by priest- kings and gnostic initiates, in 
the archaeology, folklore, and landscape of his homeland. He applied 
himself to cabbalistic and astrological studies and also claimed to be 
the last of the Armanist magicians, who had formerly wielded 
authority in the old Aryan world. 

Guido Karl Anton List was born in Vienna on 5 October 1848, the 
eldest son of a prosperous middle-class merchant. Both his mother 
and his father were descended from trading families that had been 
settled in the capital for at least two generations. Maria List, the 
mother of Guido, was the daughter of a builder’s merchant, Franz 
Anton Killian, who had served as the commander of the First Vienna 
Civil Defence during the anti-royalist 1848 revolution. His father, Karl 
Anton List, was a leather goods dealer who sold saddlery and other 
finished articles, while his grandfather, Karl List, had been a publican 



33 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

and vintner by trade. The great-grandfather had also kept an inn. 1 

Guido List was brought up in the second Bezirk of the city which lies 
on the immediate eastern side of the old Danube canal in the centre. 
Several accounts suggest that List was a happy child in a secure home. 
In 1851 Anton von Anreiter painted a water-colour portrait of him. 2 
Such a commission would indicate that the family was both affluent 
and identified with the customs of the Vienna bourgeoisie. Young List 
enjoyed a good relationship with his parents. The Lists delighted in 
taking their children on country excursions around the capital, and it 
was these outings which initially established List’s love of nature and 
rural landscape. List also displayed an artistic bent inasmuch as he 
tried to render these sentiments in both pictures and words, efforts 
which were encouraged by his father’s instruction in drawing and 
painting. List’s surviving sketches date from 1863 (aet. 15) and depict 
castles, prehistoric monuments, and the natural scenery of Lower 
Austria and Moravia. 3 

Like most Austrians, the List family was Roman Catholic, and List 
had been duly christened at St Peter’s Church in Vienna. However, in 
1862, an incident occurred that revealed his lack of interest in 
orthodox religion. When his father and friends planned to visit the 
catacombs beneath St Stephen’s Cathedral, List was determined to 
accompany the adults. The dark and narrow vaults made a strong 
impression on him. He later claimed that he had knelt before a ruined 
altar in the crypt and sworn to build a temple to Wotan once he had 
grown up. Evidently he regarded the labyrinth under the cathedral as 
a pre-Christian shrine dedicated to a pagan deity. List was later to 
claim that his conversion dated from this revelation. 4 

List wanted to become an artist and a scholar, by which he 
understood a romantic historian who could read the past from 
folklore and the landscape. This ambition brought him into conflict 
with his father, who wanted him to work in the family leather business 
as the eldest son and heir. List conformed with these paternal 
expectations and resigned himself to a commercial training, but his 
submission to the demands of work was by no means total. Henceforth 
he divided his time between the claims of commerce and a private 
world of art, imagination and nature-worship. During working hours 
he would assist his father, but he dedicated all his leisure time to 
rambling or riding through the countryside in all weathers, while 
sketching scenes and writing down his experiences. 5 These rural 
excursions were given direction and focus through List’s interest in 
alpinism and rowing. He was proficient at both sports, becoming a 



34 




GUIDO VON LIST 



leading member of the Viennese rowing club Donauhort and the 
secretary of the Osterreichischer Alpenverein (Austrian Alpine Association) 
in 1871. It is significant that his first published piece appeared in the 
annual of the Alpine Association. Sport had evidently assumed the 
role of an active communion with the elemental realms of rivers and 
mountains. 6 

List’s love of nature was inspired by a desire for solitude and escape 
from the workaday world. He was happiest if he could undertake his 
excursions alone. Although not averse to the company of friends, he 
often experienced others as a hindrance to the enjoyment of his 
inmost being. 7 Surviving descriptions of excursions undertaken 
in company indicate his withdrawal from the group and a tendency to 
strike off on a private adventure. His ritualization of such adventures 
served to make his private world even more exclusive and earned him 
the reputation of a lone wolf and a mystic. Such rituals are illustrated 
by his midsummer solstice camps. After a long hike across the 
Marchfeld, List and his friends had once gone to an inn. When a 
thunderstorm compelled the group to stay there overnight, List left to 
celebrate the solstice by sleeping out alone on the Geiselberg hill-fort. 8 
Again, on 24 June 1875 he persuaded four friends to take the 
afternoon off work and to row with him on the Danube. Downstream 
they came upon the ruins of the Roman town of Carnuntum, where 
the group camped and caroused into the night. For his friends this was 
a most congenial evening; for List, lost in reverie, it was the 1500th 
anniversary of the tribal German victory over the Romans, which he 
celebrated with a fire and the burial of eight wine botdes in the shape 
of a swastika beneath the arch of the Pagan Gate. 9 

In later years List frankly explained his attraction to nature as a 
reaction to the modern world of streets, shops, and factories. He often 
expressed his dislike of metropolitan Vienna: whenever he left the city 
for the country he felt he had escaped ‘the foggy shroud of the 
metropolis’ and ‘fearful scenes of the wild pursuit of profit’. The 
modern economy had, according to List, led humans astray under the 
motto of self-seeking individualism. 10 ‘One must flee those places 
where life throbs and seek out lonely spots untouched by human 
hand in order to lift the magic veil of nature.’ 11 His flight into the 
benign and tranquil realm of nature was an escape from modernity, 
which he may ha-ve associated with paternal pressure towards a career 
in commerce. 

While his father continued to manage the leather business. List 
could freely indulge his taste for solitude, sports, and long excursions. 



35 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

But after Karl Anton died in 1877, List was forced to make his own 
living. Being quite unsuited for commerce, he soon retired from the 
business and married his first wife, Helene Forster-Peters, on 26 
September 1878. He recalled the next decade as a period of 
hardship, 12 as the couple eked out a very modest existence on scant 
private means and the small income from List’s journalism. 13 

With his business career at an end, List was now able to pursue his 
interests in literature and history on a full-time basis. From 1877 to 
1887 he published numerous articles about the Austrian countryside 
and the customs of its inhabitants in the newspapers Heimat, Deutsche 
Zeitung and Neue Welt, all known for their nationalist sentiment. His 
studies of landscape were coloured by a pagan interpretation of local 
place-names, customs and popular legends. A typical early idyll about 
a group of medieval castles near Melk was published in the Neue 
Deutsche Alpenzeitung in 1 8 7 7 . 1 4 Because the Austrian Alpine Association 
had assumed a trans-national status in 1874, thereby ignoring the 
German-Austrian borders of the 1867 and 1871 setdements, List was 
in contact with both Austrian and German members of the Association 
with nationalist and Pan-German attitudes. List now celebrated the 
fact that the landscape was native. The Alps and Danube were revered 
for their national identity; streams, fields and hills were personified as 
spirits culled from Teutonic myth and folklore. These early articles 
were distinguished from the juvenilia by their markedly volkisch and 
nationalist stamp. 

During these years List was working at his first full-length novel, 
Camuntum, inspired by that memorable summer solstice party of 
1875. In 1881 he published a short account ofhis vivid experiences on 
that occasion. Enthralled by the genius loci List had gazed into the 
distant past of Carnuntum. The streets and splendid buildings of the 
ruined town rose around him, the ethereal figures of its former 
inhabitants passed before his mind’s eye, and then he witnessed that 
fateful battle between Germans and Romans, which had led to the fall 
of the garrison in 375. In his opinion this attack of the Quadi and 
Marcomanni tribes started the Germanic migrations which eventually 
led to the sack of Rome in 410 and the collapse of the Empire. To List, 
the very word Carnuntum evoked the hazy aura of olden Germanic 
valour, a signal motto recalling the event that put the ancient Germans 
back on the stage of world history. 15 Camuntum, published in two 
volumes in 1888, described a romance enacted against this fanciful 
background. 

This specious history was doubly attractive to German nationalists 



36 




GUIDO VON LIST 



in Austria. In the first place List placed Austrian- settled tribes in the van 
of the assault on Rome. Secondly, his account suggested that these 
tribal settlers of pre- Roman Austria and the post-Roman barbarian 
kingdoms of the Dark Ages constituted a continuous native occupation 
of the homeland. Their high civilization, to use List’s terms, had been 
interrupted only twice in its entire history: once by the Roman 
colonization of Pannonia lasting from c. 100 until 375, and secondly 
with the advent of Christianity, or ‘the other Rome’. 16 This account 
reflected List’s loathing of the contemporary Catholic establishment 
in Austria. The present political order and main confession were 
shown to be illegitimate, deriving from the imposition of a foreign 
yoke and the suppression of Germanic culture many centuries before. 

This mythology caught the attention of German nationalists in 
search of legitimations for their own disenchantment with the multi- 
national Austrian state. The earliest recognition of his novel proved 
most valuable to List. In 1888 there had also appeared an historical 
work entided Der altdeutsche Volksstamm der Quaden [The ancient German 
Quadi tribe] by Heinrich Kirchmayr. The publisher was the Verein 
‘Deutsches Haus’ax Brno, whose president was the industrialist Friedrich 
Wannieck, chairman of the Prague Iron Company and the First Brno 
Engineering Company, both major producers of capital goods in the 
Habsburg empire. The Verein ‘Deutsches Haus'was a nationalist association 
for German inhabitants of Brno, who felt encircled by the over- 
whelmingly Czech population of South Moravia. Wannieck was 
impressed by the parallels between List’s clairvoyant account of the 
Quadi and the academic study of Kirchmayr. Between Wannieck and 
List there developed a regular correspondence that laid the basis of a 
lasting friendship. The Verein ‘Deutsches Haus’ later published three of 
List’s works in its own book-series of nationalist studies of history and 
literature, while Wannieck’ s munificence eventually led to the found- 
ation of the List Society twenty years later. 17 

Besides its appeal to this volkisch circle at Brno, Camuntum helped to 
establish List as a familiar figure in the Austrian Pan-German 
movement associated with the names of Ritter Georg von Schonerer 
and Karl Wolf. Schonerer had first secured election to the Austrian 
Reichsrat in 1873 and became the outspoken protagonist of anti- 
Semitism and nationalism amongst the German nationals of the 
Habsburg empire. He made his first anti-Semitic speech before the 
assembly in 1878 and demanded the economic and political union of 
German- speaking Austria with the German Reich in his election 
address. From 1883 onwards he published a virulently nationalist 



37 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

newspaper Unverfalschte Deutsche Worte, which stressed the German 
identity of Austrian Germans and recommended a separation of 
German provinces from the remainder of the multi-national Habsburg 
empire. During this decade Schonerer achieved a modest following in 
many provincial groups, cultural societies, and sports clubs with 
similar sentiments. All these numerous associations were concerned 
with raising nationalist consciousness among the Austrian Germans in 
a variety of ways: anniversary celebrations for German royalty and 
culture heroes like the Prussian Kaiser, Bismarck, Moltke, and 
Wagner; midsummer and yuletide solstice festivals in accordance with 
ancient custom; and study-groups for the appreciation of German 
history and literature. List now made his own mark in this milieu 
during the 1890s. 

In 1890 Karl Wolf, a Pan- German parliamentary deputy, had begun 
publishing the weekly Ostdeutsche Rundschau [East German Review], the 
political tenor of which was only slightly less nationalistic than 
Schonerer’s paper. List became a regular contributor. In 1891 the 
paper published extracts of his recent book, Deutsch-Mythologische 
Landschaftsbilder [German- Mythological Landscape Pictures ] (1891), which 
comprised an anthology of his folkloristic journalism from the 
previous decade. The dtles of his articles over the next years witness 
his tireless interest in the ancient national past of Austria: 1893 saw the 
publication of ‘Gbtterdammerung’ and ‘Allerseelen und dervorchrist- 
licheTotenkult des deutschen Volkes’ in Wolf’s paper; 18 in 1894 came 
a long serialized article ‘Die deutsche Mythologie im Rahmen des 
Kalenderjahres’, and, with a typically volkisch touch of peasant 
romanticism, ‘Der Kohlenbrenner, ein nieder-osterreichische Volks- 
type’; 19 the celebration of national crafts was more general in his ‘Die 
Bliitezeit des deutschen Handwerkers im Mittelalter’ of 1895. 20 
Studies of magical folklore occurred in the articles ‘Der deutsche 
Zauberglaube im Bauwesen’ and ‘Mephistopheles’. 21 By the middle of 
the decade List’s nationalist sentiment included anti-Semitism, witness 
his deprecatory essay ‘Die Judenals Staatund Nation’. 22 He also wrote 
in Aurelius Polzer’s Bote aus dem Waldviertel [The Waldviertel Herald ] (est. 
1878) and in Kyjjhauser (est. 1887), which had hoisted the Pan-German 
flag at Horn and Salzburg. His topics were heraldry and folk customs 
concerning baptism, marriage, and burial. In his opinion these 
traditional institutions all reflected archaic Teutonic practices. 23 List’s 
nationalization of local history and archaeology was followed by 
Franz Kiessling, author of several books on topography, ancient 
monuments and customs in Lower Austria. The two men were 



38 




GUIDO VON LIST 



acquainted and doubdess influenced each other. 

Journalism by no means exhausted List’s support of the Pan- 
German cause, for he was also active in the movement as a lecturer and 
a playwright. On 24 February 1893 he delivered a lecture to the 
nationalist Verein ‘Deutsche Geschichte’ about the ancient holy priesthood 
of the Wotan cult. List claimed this extinct faith had been the national 
religion of the Teutons. Moreover, it was a theme dear to List, since it 
had formed the subject of an earlier lecture read to members of 
Wannieck’s Verein ‘Deutsches Haus’ in 1892 at Brno. In due course this 
imaginary priesthood would become the central idea of his political 
mythology. 24 He was also associated with the Bund der Germanen, the 
Verein refounded in January 1 894 by Karl Wolf and Karl Iro, the editor 
of Schonerer’s newspaper. On 3 December 1894 this league threw a 
Germanic evening festival, where diversions included a choir, music 
and the premiere of List’s mythological play Der Wala Erweckung [The 
Wala’s Awakening], followed by a speech on the German mission. The 
festival was exclusive to nationalists and the ticket of admission read 
‘not valid for Jews’. 25 As a member of the strongly nationalistic 
Deutscher Tumverein (German Gymnastic League, est. 1885), List 
commemorated the 1 895 yuletide festival of its Leopoldstadt branch 
with a rousing oration entitled ‘Deutsche Treue’, which was subse- 
quently published in Der Hammer (est. 1 894), the monthly periodical of 
the German Nationalist Workers’ League, and appearing as a supple- 
ment to the Ostdeutsche Rundschau. 

List continued to publish his own literary works throughout the 
1890s. In 1893 he had founded, together with Fanny Wschiansky, a 
belletristic society for the purpose of fostering neo-romantic and 
nationalist literature in Vienna. This Literarische Donaugesellschaft 
(Danubian Literary Society) was modelled on the fifteenth-century 
litteraria sodalita Danubiana of the Viennese humanist Conrad Celte 
(1459-1508), about whom List wrote a short biography in 1893. The 
success of his first novel Camuntum was repeated with two more 
historical romances set in tribal Germany. Jung Diethers Heimkehr 
[Young Diether’s Homecoming ] ( 1 894) related the story of a young Teuton, 
who was converted to Christianity by force in the fifth century. The 
novel closes with the joyful return of the apostate to his original 
religion of sun-worship. Hardly less melodramatic was the saga Pipara 
(1895), a two-volume novel which recounted the sensational career of 
Pipara, a Quadi maiden of Eburodunum (Brno), who rose from 
Roman captivity to the rank of empress. Representatives of the Pan- 
German movement were glowing in their praise of List’s fiction. Pipara 



39 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

received enthusiastic reviews in both Schonerer’s and Wolf’s papers. 
On 9 April 1895 the editorial board of the Ostdeutsehe Rundschau 
convened a Guido List evening in the author’s honour. There were 
poetry-readings and lectures by Ottokar Stauf von der March, editor 
of the Tiroler Wochenschn.fi, and by Karl Ptak, another editor on Wolf’s 
paper. List also composed lyrical pieces in a mythological and 
nationalist idiom. After his Walkiiren-Weihe [The Valkyries’ Initiation } 
(1895) had been published by Wannieck’s association at Brno, the 
Wieden Singers’ Club in South Vienna gave a spring recital on 6 June 
1896, when his poem Ostara’s Einzug was sung. The same choral 
society organized a List festival to commemorate the silver anniversary 
of his literary endeavour on 7 April 1897. By this date List had become 
a celebrity amongst the Pan- German groups of Austria. 26 

List’s search for the ancient religion of his country led him towards 
the pagan deism evidenced by his catechism Der Unbesiegbare [The 
Invincible ] (1898). On 6 January 1898 he had been visited by the Old 
Catholic bishop of Bohemia, Nittel von Warnsdorf, who warmly 
congratulated him on his inauguration of ‘a new epoch in the history 
of religion’. 27 On the later occasion of List’s second marriage, in 
August 1 899, to Anna Wittek of Stecky in Bohemia, the wedding was 
celebrated in the evangelical Protestant church. 28 His wife’s Lutheranism 
reflects the spiritual waverings of many Austrian Pan-Germans, who 
wished to express their disgust with the multi-national empire by a 
rejection of its common Catholic faith. Aurelius Polzer had converted 
formally to Protestantism in 1885; Schonerer followed suit in 1900. 
This tendency was particularly strong after 1 898 in the border areas of 
German settlement, where Austrian Pan-Germans were encouraged 
by Schonerer’s Los von Rom campaign to distinguish themselves from 
their C zech and Slovene neighbours by a Prussian set of sacred values. 
It has been estimated that there were ten thousand converts in Austria 
by 1900, and that over half of these were resident in Bohemia. 29 
However, List’s volkisch bias towards paganism precluded any formal 
involvement with an alternative Christian confession. 

Anna Wittek was the actress who had played the Wala at the evening 
festival in 1894; she also had given dramatic recitations of List’s 
poetry. Her portrait shows a pretty, young woman dressed in a fashion 
redolent of fin-de-siecle mystery and natural appeal. 30 In her List had 
found both an inspired and inspiring interpreter for his presentation 
of the sentimental national past. 31 Following their marriage List 
dedicated himself exclusively to drama. His plays, Konig Vannius [King 
Vannius] (1899), Sommer-Sonnwend-Feuerzauber [Summer Solstice Fire 



40 




GUIDO VON LIST 



Magic\ (1901), and Das Goldstuck [The Gold Coin] (1903), were concerned 
with royal tragedy, solstice festivals, and a love story in times of yore. 
An interesting product of this use of the stage as a vehicle for his ideas 
was the programmatic pamphlet Der Wiederaujhau von Camuntum [The 
Reconstruction of Camuntum]] 1 900). Here List called for a reconstruction 
of the Roman amphitheatre as an open-air stage for the production of 
scenarios including dragon- slaying, regattas, bardic contests and 
Thinge (annual Germanic assemblies), which would all carry the 
symbolism of Wotanism to an ever wider public of Pan-Germans in 
Austria. List called the projected New Camuntum a ‘German- 
Austrian Bayreuth’ and it was indeed evident that the example of 
Richard Wagner had served him as a model. 32 

By the turn of the century List had achieved modest success as a 
writer in the idiom of contemporary neo-romantic and nationalistic 
genres. His writings focused attention on the heroic past and religious 
mythology of his native country. The year 1 902 witnessed a funda- 
mental change in the character of his ideas: occult notions now 
entered his fantasy of the ancient Germanic faith. After undergoing an 
eye operation to relieve a cataract in 1 902, List was blind for eleven 
months. Throughout a long and anxious period of enforced rest, he 
took solace in pondering the origins of the runes and language. 33 In 
April 1903 List sent a manuscript about the Aryan proto-language to 
the Imperial Academy of Sciences in Vienna. This document set out 
the idea of a monumental pseudo-science concerned with Germanic 
linguistics and symbology: it was his first attempt to interpret, by 
means of occult insight, the letters and sounds of the runes and 
alphabet on the one hand, and the emblems and glyphs of ancient 
inscriptions on the other. Although the Academy returned his 
manuscript with no comment, this slight piece grew over the ensuing 
decade to become the masterpiece of his occult-nationalist researches. 34 
In September 1 903 the Viennese occult periodical Die Gnosis published 
an article by List, which indicated the new theosophical cast of his 
thought. Here the author outlined the process of the universe’s 
creation and illustrated its phases with the triskelion and swastika 
glyphs. A fuller discussion of the theosophical influence on List’s 
writings is reserved for a later chapter. 

Between 1 903 and 1 907 List made occasional use of the aristocratic 
title ‘von’ in his name: he finally entered the title in the Vienna 
address-book of 1907. This entry came to the notice of the nobility' 
archive, which urged an official enquiry. On 2 October 1907 List 
asserted before the magistrates that his family was descended from 



41 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Lower Austrian and Styrian aristocracy. He claimed that his great- 
grandfather had abandoned the tide upon entering a burgher trade 
(inn keeper), but that he, Guido von List, had resumed the title after 
leaving commerce for a literary career in 1878. In support of his title 
List produced a signet ring, which his great-grandfather had allegedly 
worn. This bore a coat-of-arms displaying two rampant foxes ( List 
means cunning in German) upon a quartered field, which was the 
blazon of the twelfth-century knight, Burckhardt von List, according 
to an old chronicle. 35 

Although it is possible that List did possess some tenuous claim to 
nobility, the sociological implications of its assertion in either 1 878 or 
1907 are more important. Why did List want the tide must be our first 
question. According to his own testimony, List assumed the title once 
he had abandoned a commercial career. As an author, List felt himself 
to be a member of a cultivated elite, according to an idealist tradition 
which had struck deep chords amongst the German middle classes of 
the nineteenth century. Seen in this light, List’s assumption of a noble 
title represents a socio-cultural confirmation of his desired identity. 36 
On the other hand, if his use of the title dates from 1907, as the 
documents suggest, his self-ennoblement can be regarded as an 
integral part of his religious fantasy. According to his lectures on the 
Wotanist priesthood, List believed that this ancient religious elite had 
formed the first aristocracy of tribal Germany. From 1905 to 1907 he 
had extended this line through his heraldic studies. These discussions 
treated heraldry as a system of esoteric family emblems which had 
been handed down from the old hierarchy to the modern nobility. 37 
By claiming an aristocratic tide and an armorial device, List was 
reassuring himself that he was a descendant of the hierarchy as well as 
its historian. His friend, Lanz von Liebenfels, had also assumed a 
noble title by 1903 and may have influenced List. 38 The aristocratic 
trappings of genealogy and heraldry served, through their esoteric 
interpretation, to reassure men of their identity and worth. 

Despite the rebuff of the Imperial Academy, List’s fortunes changed. 
In December 1904 Rudolf Berger raised the matter in parliament and 
demanded an explanation of List’s treatment from the Minister for 
Culture and Education. This interpellation was signed by fifteen 
Viennese dignitaries. 39 No redress from the Academy was forthcoming, 
but the uproar led the supporters of List to moot the founding of a List 
Society (Guido-von-List-Gesellschaft) , which would finance and publish a 
formal series of List’s ‘researches’ into the ancient nationalist past. 
Both this incident and proposition demonstrate the significant appeal 



42 




GUIDO VON LIST 



of List’s ideas to Pan-Germans and occultists alike. 

Around 1905 Friedrich Wannieck, his son Friedrich Oskar Wannieck, 
Lanz von Liebenfels and some fifty other individuals signed the first 
announcement concerning support for a List Society. A study of its 
signatories reveals the widespread and significant support for List 
amongst public figures in Austria and Germany. Here are the names 
of Karl Lueger, the anti-Semitic mayor of Vienna; Ludwig von 
Bernuth, chairman of a volkisch health organization; Ferdinand Khull, 
committee member of the German Language Club; Adolf Harpf, 
editor of the Marburger Zeitung; Hermann Pfister-Schwaighusen, lecturer 
in linguistics at Darmstadt U niversity and an enthusiastic supporter of 
Austrian Pan- Germanism; Wilhelm von Pickl-Scharfenstein (Baron 
von Witkenberg), compiler of several anti-Semitic directories; Amand 
Freiherr von Schweiger-Lerchenfeld, editor of the popular magazine 
Stein der Weisen and a distinguished army officer; Aurelius Polzer, 
editor of nationalist newspapers at Horn and Graz; Ernst Wachler, the 
volkisch author and founder of an open-air Germanic theatre in the 
Harz mountains; Wilhelm Rohmeder, a Pan-German educationist at 
Munich; Arthur Schulz, editor of a Berlin periodical for volkisch 
educational reform; Friedrich Wiegershaus, chairman of the Elberfeld 
branch of the powerful Deutschnationaler Handlungsgehilfen-Verband 
[DHV] (German Nationalist Commercial Employees’ Association) 
and Franz Winterstein, committee member of the anti-Semitic 
German Social Party (DSP) at Kassel. These representatives of Pan- 
Germanism in Austria and Germany were joined by several occultists: 
Hugo Goring, editor of theosophical literature at Weimar; Harald 
Arjuna Graved van Jostenoode, a theosophical author at Heidelberg; 
Max Seiling, an esoteric pamphleteer and popular philosopher in 
Munich; and Paul Zillmann, editor of the Metaphysische Rundschau and 
master of an occult lodge at Berlin. All these men endorsed the 
foundation of the List Society. 40 

After an official founding ceremony on 2 March 1908, the List 
Society continued to attract this distinctive mixture of nationalist and 
occultist supporters. From 1908 to 1912 new members included the 
deputy Beranek, a co-founder of the Bund der Germanen in 1894; 
Rudolf Berger, committee member of the German Nationalist Workers’ 
League in Vienna; Hermann Brass, chairman of the defensive League 
of Germans in North Moravia (est. 1886); Dankwart Gerlach, an 
ardent supporter of the nationalist and romantic Youth Movement; 
Conrad Glasenapp, the nationalist biographer of Wagner; Colonel 
Karl Hellwig, a volkisch organizer at Kassel; Bernhard Koerner, the 



43 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

heraldic expert and popularizer of middle-class genealogy; Josef 
Ludwig Reimer, a Pan-German author in Vienna; Philipp Stauff, a 
virulently anu-Semitic journalist in Berlin; and Karl Herzog, chairman 
of the Mannheim branch of the DHV. In addition to this roll of 
nationalists one finds the leading German theosophist Franz Hartmann, 
the theosophical editor Arthur Weber, the occult novelist Karl Hilm, 
the theosophist General Blasius von Schemua, the collective member- 
ship of the Vienna Theosophical Society, and Karl Heise, a leading 
figure in the vegetarian and mystical Mazdaznan cult at Zurich. The 
register implies that List’s ideas were acceptable to many intelligent 
persons drawn from the upper and middle classes of Austria and 
Germany. Attracted by his unique amalgam of nationalist mythology 
and esotericism, these men were prepared to contribute ten crowns as 
an annual society subscription. The main part of the Society’s assets 
derived from the Wannieck family, which put up more than three 
thousand crowns at its inauguration. 41 

Encouraged by this generous provision, List wrote a series of ‘Ario- 
Germanic research reports’ ( Guido-List-Bucherei ) which were based 
upon his occult interpretations of ancient national culture. Between 
1 908 and 1911, six reports were issued as booklets under the auspices 
of the List Society. These publications included a key to the meaning 
and magical power of the runes ( GLB 1), a study of the political 
authority and organization of the Wotanist priesthood (the Armanen- 
schaft ) [GLB 2 and 2a), esoteric interpretations of folklore and place- 
names ( GLB 3 and GLB 4), and a glossary of secret Aryan messages in 
hieroglyphs and heraldic devices ( GLB 5). In 1914 List published his 
masterpiece of occult linguistics and symbology ( GLB 6). These seven 
booklets represent the systematic exposition of his fantasy concerning 
the religious, political and social institutions of the national past. This 
fantasy of the past (and a desired present) records a Weltanschauung 
shared by List and his close supporters. It will be the task of later 
chapters to analyse this Weltanschauung. 

List’s reputation amongst members of the volkisch and nationalist 
subcultures grew in the wake of his first three ‘reports’ of 1908. The 
institutions of the Ario-Germans were frequendy discussed in the 
volkisch press and other newspapers. From 1909 onwards List’s name 
became well known among volkisch groups of Austria and Germany: 
the Neues Wiener Tagblatt and the Grazer Wochenblatt praised his 
discoveries in the ancient national past; Der Tag, a Berlin daily paper, 
credited him with the illumination of a priceless heritage; a French 
periodical regarded him as ‘a teacher of mystical imperialism’. 42 In 



44 




GUIDO VON LIST 



February 1911 alone three academic lectures were delivered about 
him in Vienna and Berlin. 43 Following this acclaim List was feted by 
minor authors, who drew upon his ‘researches’ for their inspiration. 
In 1907 Jerome Bal, a Hungarian schoolmaster at LevoCa, published 
an occult manual of Magyar heraldry, which he dedicated to List; 44 his 
example was followed by B. Hanftmann in his study of regional 
domestic architecture and by Ernst von Wolzogen in his survey of 
contemporary literature. 45 In June 1909 Wolzogen staged his volkisch 
drama, Die Maibraut [The May Bride], at Wiesbaden. He had dedicated 
the play to List in words of deep admiration and was delighted to 
introduce the old author in person to the audience. A reporter 
described List as ‘a martial, bearded manifestation of Armanism’. 46 In 
1912, Karl Heise wrote about seven special and holy runes, indicating 
that his work was based on the discoveries of ‘his dearest teacher 
Guido von List’, while Karl Engelhardt dedicated a mythological idyll 
to his ‘teacher of the Divine’. 47 The German theosophists also 
acknowledged List’s nationalist popularization of their doctrines. 
Franz Hartmann compared List’s work on hieroglyphs to Blavatsky’s 
Isis Unveiled, while Johannes Balzli, editor of Prana, wrote a biography 
of List as ‘the rediscoverer of ancient Aryan wisdom’. 48 

List’s ideas were passed on by means of three principal channels. 
His ideology, rooted in the conflict of German and Slav national 
interests within the Habsburg empire, possessed an evident appeal to 
volkisch groups in Germany, which also sought a chauvinist mystique 
for the defence of Germandom against liberal, socialist, and ‘Jewish’ 
political forces in the late Wilhelmian era. The most important carriers 
of Listian ideas across the border were those members of the List 
Society in the German Reich who were involved in the founding of the 
Reichshammerbund and the Germanenorden. Philipp Stauff, Karl 
Hellwig, Georg Hauerstein, Bernhard Koerner, and Eberhard von 
Brockhusen were active in both these pre-war anti-Semitic volkisch 
leagues. In subsequent chapters this ideological succession is traced 
through the Germanenorden and its Munich offshoot, the Thule 
Society, to the infant Nazi Party after the war. This channel of 
influence certainly carries most weight in any assessment of List’s 
historical importance. 

The second channel concerns several shadowy volkisch figures in 
Germany, whose publicistic activity ensured a wider audience for 
Listian ideas among the German public both during and after the war. 
In November 1911 List received a letter from a pseudonymous 
individual calling himself Tarnhari, who claimed that he was the 



45 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

descendant or reincarnation of a chieftain of the ancient Wolsungen 
tribe in prehistoric Germany. Tarnhari assured List that his ancestral- 
clairvoyant memories confirmed List’s own reconstruction of the 
Ario- Germanic traditions and hierarchic institutions. Tarnhari subse- 
quently published two patriotic brochures at Diessen near Munich 
during the war, later establishing a v olkisch publishing house at 
Leipzig. During the early post-war period he was associated with Dietrich 
Eckart, Hitler’s mentor in the early days of the Nazi Party. That 
Tarnhari popularized List’s ideas during the war can be seen from the 
writings of Ellegaard Ellerbek, a wo/Az.vc/i- mystical author, who paid 
extravagant tribute to both Tarnhari and List. His example was 
followed by others in the 1920s who wrote about the religion of 
Armanism and guaranteed this word a certain currency in nationalist 
usage. 49 

The third channel of Listian influence in Germany concerns those 
individuals, who specifically built upon his ideas of an occult Aryan- 
German heritage and elaborated upon the wisdom of the runes, 
mantic sciences, the Edda, and Teutonic astrology. Rudolf John 
Gorsleben, Werner von Biilow, Friedrich Bernhard Marby, Herbert 
Reichstein and Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann created a complex corpus 
of armanist-ariosophical lore, which, while associated with the writings 
ofjorg Lanz von Liebenfels during the 1920s, owed a more significant 
and acknowledged debt to Guido von List. This later ariosophical 
movement flourished in Germany during the late 1920s and 1930s. 
Although these individuals worked in esoteric circles and sought no 
political involvement, a small coterie of these Edda and runological 
occultists enjoyed the confidence of Heinrich Himmler during the 
mid-1980s and contributed to the symbolism and ritual of the SS. 50 

List himself remained a mystical thinker with little organizational 
ability. However, he did found a tiny inner ring of initiates within the 
List Society called the HAO, which stood for Hoher Armanen-Orden 
(High Armanen-Order). The HAO was formally founded at the 
midsummer solstice of 1911, when the most dedicated List Society 
members in Berlin, Hamburg, and Munich travelled to meet their 
Austrian colleagues in Vienna. List took this elect on several ‘pilgrimages’ 
to certain places in ‘the land of Ostara, where the spirit of Hari-Wotan 
still reigned’. On 23 June 1911 the group visited the cathedral 
catacombs, where the young List had first sensed this pagan god, and 
then proceeded to other allegedly Wotanist sanctuaries on the 
Kahlenberg, on the Leopoldsberg and at Klosterneuburg. Over the 
next three days, the enthusiasts made their way to Briihl near 



46 




GUIDO VON LIST 



Modling, Burg Kreuzenstein, and finally to Carnuntuin. This last 
expedition marked the climax of these ‘pilgrimages to sanctuaries 
undertaken by our Armanist congregation’. The commemorative 
photographs of this climax indicate that the congregation numbered 
only ten persons. 51 The HAO was supposed to be a post for the 
architects of ‘a new Spiritual Germany’, but its minute sectarian and 
pietist nature is all too evident. In April 1915 List convened at Vienna 
an HAO meeting, which now numbered more Austrian public figures 
who had gathered to hear List’s rousing Easter address. 52 

The HAO was a dead end in terms of historically significant groups, 
since List chose to work on occult and racial problems throughout the 
war in the calm of his study. His final ‘research report’ entitled 
‘Armanismus und Kabbala’ was intended to amplify his earlier 
speculations on the occult ‘correspondences’ between various objects 
and qualities in the physical world, including animals, plants, 
minerals, colours, sounds, musical notes and numbers, within an 
esoteric scheme of interpretation. The ‘report’ was never completed in 
a publishable form. During 1916 and 1917 List wrote several articles 
on the approaching national millennium, which was supposed to be 
realized once the Allies had been defeated;Johannes Balzli published 
two of these predictions in his Prana in 1917. 

During the war years List’s ideas continued to attract individuals, 
who sought sacred explanations for the hardships and trials of the war. 
List received many letters from men at the front who expressed their 
gratitude for his cheering discoveries; stories of runes and ancient 
Aryan symbols found on stones far from hearth and home gave them 
hope in a final victory for the Ario- Germans. List’s books were passed 
around by men in the trenches and field hospitals. 55 At the beginning 
of 1917 List had a vision which assured him of a final victory for the 
Central Powers over the Allies, but these hopes were betrayed. The 
year 1918 brought the Allied blockade of Europe, where food and fuel 
supplies ran low in the cities. In the early autumn the Habsburg 
empire began to dissolve and the Austrians were compelled to sue for 
peace on 3 October 1918. List regarded the catastrophe in a 
millenarian context: this collapse was necessary as a period of woes 
before the salvation of the Ario-Germans. 

In late 1918 the seventy- year-old guru was in poor health owing to 
food shortages in Vienna. The following spring List and his wife set off 
to spend a period of recuperation at the manor-house of Eberhard 
von Brockhusen, a List Society patron who lived at Langen in 
Brandenburg. On arrival at the Anhalter Station at Berlin, List was too 



47 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



exhausted to continue the journey. After a doctor had diagnosed a 
lung inflammation, List’s condition deteriorated rapidly. On the 
morning of 17 May 1919 the Armanist magician and prophet of 
national revival died in a Berlin guest-house. Following his cremation 
at Leipzig, the ashes were laid in an urn at Vienna Central Cemetery. 
Philipp Stauff wrote an obituary which appeared in the Miinchener 
Beobachter, a volkisch newspaper edited by Rudolf von Sebottendorff 
that became the official Nazi organ in the course of the next year and 
remained the leading Party newspaper until 1945. Although Listnever 
lived to see the Nazi party, he was honoured by its nascent spirit. 54 



48 




4 

Wotanism and Germanic Theosophy 



List claimed that the ancient Teutons had practised a gnostic religion 
emphasizing the initiation of man into natural mysteries. He called 
this religion Wotanism after the principal god in the Germanic 
pantheon. His basic sources for the ancient religion were the Edda 
and the runes. The Old Norse poetry of Iceland painted the colourful 
mythology of its pagan inhabitants, whom List regarded as Wotanist 
refugees from Christian persecution in early medieval Germany. The 
Edda thus recorded the myths and beliefs of the ancient Germans. In 
the Edda, Wotan was worshipped as the god of war and the lord of 
dead heroes in Valhalla. He was also identified as a magician and a 
necromancer in the poems. The ‘Havamal’ and ‘Voluspa’ described 
how Wotan performed ritual acts of self-torture in order to win the 
magical gnosis of natural mysteries. According to late nineteenth- 
century scholars these acts reflected a form of shamanism. As a result 
of pain the performer of these rituals gained certain magical and 
psychical powers. 1 In the ‘Havamal’ Wotan was wounded by a spear 
and hung upon a windswept tree without food or drink for nine 
nights. At the climax of his suffering an understanding of the runes 
suddenly came to him. He sank down from the tree and then related 
the eighteen runic spells, which were typically concerned with the 
secret of immortality, the ability to heal oneself, mastery over one’s 
enemies in battle, the control of the elements and success in love. In 
the ‘Voluspa’ Wotan pledged one of his eyes to the well of Mimir in 
return for mantic knowledge of future events. It is very likely that this 
myth reminded List of his own occult insights during his period of 
blindness in 1902. 

The runes are best known as an ancient northern script formed by 
sharp separate lines for writing or cutting upon wood, metal or stone; 
but they were also used for their magical properties in divination, the 



49 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



casting of lots, invocations and the preparation of amulets and 
charms. Thus each individual rune possessed its own name and 
symbolism over and above its phonetic and literary value. List must be 
acknowledged as the pioneer of volkisch rune occultism, for he was the 
first writer to link the written runes of a particular eighteen-letter 
series, or futhark, with the runic spells related by Wotan in the 
‘Havamal’. List attributed a specific individual rune to each ofWotan’s 
verses, adding occult meanings and a summary motto of the spell. 
These occult meanings and mottoes were supposed to represent the 
doctrine and maxims of the rediscovered religion of Wotanism. 
Typical mottoes were: ‘Know yourself, then you know everything!’; 
‘Embrace the universe in yourself, and you can master the universe!’; 
‘Do not fear Death, he cannot kill you!’; ‘Your life rests in God’s hand, 
trust him in yourself!’; ‘Marriage is the root of the Aryan race!’; and 
‘Man is one with God!’ 2 The emphasis of these maxims upon the inner 
power of the human spirit and its identity with God reveals the gnostic 
nature of Wotanism. 

But Wotanism also stressed the mystical union of man with the 
universe as well as his magical powers. The doctrine described the 
universe in terms of a ceaseless process of transformation through 
‘birth’, ‘being’, ‘death’ and ‘rebirth’. The rotation of the planets, the 
seasonal cycle, the growth and decay of all living organisms confirmed 
the truth of this simple cyclical cosmology. Behind this process of 
change List saw the ‘primal laws of nature’, according to which all 
change occurred. He claimed that these laws represented an immanent 
God in Nature. List conceived of all things as an emanation of a 
spiritual force. Man was an integral part of this unified cosmos and 
thus obliged to follow a single ethical precept: to live in accordance 
with Nature. At her bosom all tensions were dissolved in a mystical 
union between man and the cosmos. A close identity with one’s folk 
and race was reckoned a logical consequence of this closeness to 
Nature. 

The twin doctrines of the magical self and a mystical union in List’s 
gnostic religion of Wotanism typify the contradictory spirit of nine- 
teenth-century Romanticism, itself a literary and spiritual response to 
the wider cultural and social changes in modern Europe. Writing of 
the motives of Romanticism, George L. Mosse has observed: 

Bewildered and challenged, men attempted to re-emphasise their own 

personality. But, since the rate of industrial transformation, as well as its 

effects, seemed to evade the grasp of reason . . . many turned away from 

rational solutions to their problems and instead delved into their own 



50 




WOTANISM AND GERMANIC THEOSOPHY 

emotional depths. This longing for self-identification . . . was accom- 
panied by a contradictory urge to belong to something greater than 
oneself . . . since existing social conditions were bewildering and 
oppressive, romantics sought to find the larger, all-encompassing unity 
outside the prevalent social and economic condition of man . 3 

List also formed his new religion from archaic materials and in 
opposition to the modern world. His doctrine emphasized the power 
of the individual spirit and a sanctuary within the cosmos of Nature. 
As the alleged gnosis of the ancient Germans, this religion was to be 
revived as the faith and moral cement of a new pan-German realm. 

List also adopted the notions of modern theosophy for his 
reconstruction of the ancient gnosis. His debt to theosophy may be 
understood in terms of two distinct sources. The first source concerns 
the writings of Max Ferdinand Sebaldt von Werth (1859-1916). 
Sebaldt had begun his literary career as the editor of a periodical, Das 
angewandte Christentum [Applied Christianity ] (1891), in collaboration 
with Moritz von Egidy, a prominent Lebensreformer in Germany. He 
was also a prolific writer on travel and foreign countries. However, in 
1897 he began to publish thick volumes on the subject of sexology. 
His ‘Wanidis’ (1897) and D.I.S. ‘Sexualreligion’ (1897) described the 
sexual- religion of the Aryans, a sacred practice of eugenics designed to 
maintain the purity of the race. Both works were published by 
Wilhelm Friedrich of Leipzig, a publisher known for his many 
theosophical editions, and were illustrated with the magical curved- 
armed swastika by the theosophical artist Fidus. Sebaldt subsequendy 
published Genesis (1898-1903) in five-volumes, which treated of 
eroticism, Bacchanalia, libido, and mania within a racist and sexological 
context. 

This Berlin author clearly anticipated Ariosophy by combining 
racial doctrines with occult notions derived from his own bizarre 
interpretations of Teutonic mythology. The contents of ‘Wanidis’ 
indicate his penchant for expounding the metaphysical symbolism of 
the Germanic pantheon. According to Sebaldt, ancient Aryan cos- 
mology was defined by the creative act of the god Mundelfori, who 
whisked the universe out of a primal fiery chaos. There subsequendy 
arose a polar dualism typified by the opposite principles of matter and 
spirit, and the male and female sexes. He insisted that eugenics was 
essential to Aryan superiority, because only a bond of ‘pure opposites’ 
could release the primal energy underlying their polarity and thereby 
generate excellent progeny. 4 Similar notions later appeared in the 
writings of List over the ensuing years. 



51 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

The first indication that List knew the work of Sebaldt occurs in his 
unsigned article ‘Germanischer Lichtdienst’, published in 1 899 in Der 
Scherer [The Mole- Catcher], a satirical Tyrolean monthly magazine 
loosely associated with the Austrian Pan-German movement. 5 Discuss- 
ing the religious significance of pagan solstice fires, List suggested that 
this ritual symbolized the original birth of the sun. He also claimed 
that the swastika was a holy Aryan symbol, since it derived from the 
Feuerquirl (fire whisk) with which Mundelfori had initially twirled the 
cosmos into being. In September 1 903 the Viennese occult periodical 
Die Gnosis published an article by List that indicated his continuing 
debt to Sebaldt. He discussed the ‘old-Aryan sexual religion’ and a 
mystical cosmogony, the phases of which he illustrated with such 
hieroglyphs as © i ! ', © i © • He also wrote for the first time 
about the immortality of the soul, reincarnation and its karmic 
determination. He distinguished between exoteric (Wotanist) and 
esoteric (Armanist) forms of religious doctrine and hinted at the total 
authority of initiates over the ordinary people in ancient Germany. 
The Teutonic gods, Wotan, Donar and Loki, were interpreted as 
symbols for esoteric cosmological ideas, the Sebaldtian stamp of 
which would have been quite evident to contemporaries. 6 This article 
marked the first stage in List’s articulation of a Germanic occult 
religion, the principal concern of which was racial purity. 

In the course of the next few years List’s writings became more 
overtly theosophical. His notes and references indicated such works as 
Madame Blavatsky’s Die Geheimlehre (1897-1901), which had been 
published in German translation by Wilhelm Friedrich in instalments 
at the turn of the century, and the German edition of William Scott- 
Elliot’s The Lost Lemuria (1905), with its descriptions of fabulous sunken 
continents and lost civilizations. List no longer termed the ancient 
natives ‘Germans’ or a ‘people’, but ‘Ario-Germans’ and a ‘race’, as if 
to stress their identity with the fifth root- race in Blavatsky’s ethnological 
scheme. The Wotanist priesthood, which List had first discussed in the 
early 1890s, was now transformed into an exalted gnostic elite of 
initiates (the Armanenschaft), which corresponded to the hierophants 
in The Secret Doctrine. Die Rita der Ario-Germanen [The Rite of the Ario- 
Germans ] (1908) regurgitated substantial parts of the theosophical 
cosmogony in its putative account of ancient Ario-Germanic belief. 
The unmanifest and manifest deities, the creation of the universe by 
divine respiration, a primal fire as the energy source of a force redolent 
of Fohat, and the gradual evolution of the cosmos according to this 
agent’s obedience to the ‘laws of nature’ received detailed treatment. 



52 




WOTANISM AND GERMANIC THEOSOPHY 

Chapter headings were supplemented with the cryptic theosophy and 
Chapter headings were supplemented with the cryptic theosophical 
sigils iX, tFi ® - 7 By now a synthesis of theosophy and 
Germanic mythology formed the basis of List’s Weltanschauung. His 
first three ‘research reports’ even made occasional use of the word 
‘theosophy’ in their exposition of imaginary ancient Teutonic beliefs. 8 

List displayed considerable knowledge of theosophical detail. Life 
was graded according to its ‘dimensionality’, which was supposed to 
increase as it continued its progress through the rounds. He also 
mentioned the airships and cyclopean structures of the Adanteans. 9 
Die Religion der Ario-Germanen (1910) presented a long discussion of the 
Hindu cosmic cycles, which had inspired Blavatsky’s hypothesis of 
rounds. List was evidendy fascinated by a numerical correspondence 
between an arithmetical riddle in the ‘Grimnismal’ of the Edda and 
the number of years in the kaliyuga, the shortest and most decadent 
of the Hindu cycles. He acknowledged Blavatsky’s Die Geheimlehre as 
the source of his speculations. 10 Astrological analyses also appeared in 
his work in 1 9 1 0, the year which witnessed the publication of the first 
popular German astrological periodicals by the Theosophical 
Publishing House. 11 

Die Bilderschrift der Ario-Germanen [The Picture-Writing of the Ario- 
Germans ] (1910) described the theosophical cosmogony in further 
detail: List’s account of the divine manifestation alluded to the three 
Logoi and the ensuing rounds of fire, air, water and earth. List 
depicted these stages with the Blavatskyan-Hindu sigils O0®©© 
and identified the first four rounds as the mythological Teutonic 
realms of Muspilheim, Asgard, Wanenheim and Midgard, which were 
tenanted respectively by fire-dragons, air-gods, water-giants and 
mankind. He also evidenced his debt to Blavatsky in his adoption of 
seven root-races for each round. List claimed that the Ario-Germans 
represented the fifth and current race in the present round, while 
ascribing the names of mythical Teutonic giants to the four preceding 
races. The diluvial Adanteans were equated with the kinsfolk of the 
giant Bergelmir, who was supposed to have survived a flood in Norse 
mythology, while the third race was reckoned to be the kinsmen of the 
giant Thrudgelmir. In common with Blavatsky, List suggested that 
this third race (her Lemurians) had been the first to propagate 
themselves through sexual reproduction. The two earlier races, 
namely the kinsmen of Ymir and Orgelmir, were androgynous and 
clearly corresponded to Blavatsky’s Astral and Hypoborean races. 12 

This Germanization of theosophy was extended by three tables in 



53 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

the appendix. The first illustrated the evolutionary stages of a round 
through one complete cycle from unity to multiplicity and back to 
unity. Corresponding to the theosophical notions of unmanifest and 
manifest deities, the three Logoi, the five elemental realms (now 
including ether) and the appearance of mankind, List invoked 
mythological German equivalents. He called the divine being Allvater, 
who manifested himself in the three Logoi as Wotan, Wili, and We. A 
series of anti-clockwise triskelions and swastikas and inverted triangles 
symbolized stages of cosmic evolution in the downsweep of the cycle 
(i.e. the evolution from unity to multiplicity), while their clockwise and 
upright counterparts connoted the return path to the godhead. The 
skewed super-imposition of these ‘falling’ and ‘rising’ sigils created 
complex sigils like the hexagram and the Maltese Cross Jfw . List 
asserted that these latter sigils were utterly sacred, because they 
embraced the two antithetical forces of all creation: as the representative 
symbols of the zenith of multiplicity at the outermost limit of the 
cycle, they denoted the Ario-Germanic god-man, the highest form of 
life ever to evolve in the universe. Two further tables recorded a 
cabbalistic scheme of ‘correspondences’ between plants, trees, birds 
and deities of the Classical and Germanic pantheons. 13 Franz Hart- 
mann commended this work, comparing its scope with that of 
Blavatsky’s Isis Unveiled , and praised List for his discovery of the 
congruence between Germanic and Hindu doctrines. 14 

In 1914 List published the sixth and last of his ‘research reports’, Die 
Ursprache der Ario-Germanen [The Proto- Language of the Ario- Germans], 
which introduced yet more theosophical notions into his account of 
the ancient national past. To the root- races of the Lemurians and 
Atlanteans he assigned homelands on sunken continents in accordance 
with the speculations of William Scott-Elliot, whose map he reproduced. 
List also claimed that the prehistoric megaliths and the huge rocking- 
stones of Lower Austria indicated the survival of an Atlantean ‘island’ 
within the modern European continent. A chart at the end of this work 
sought to reconcile the geological periods of the Earth, as established 
by contemporary palaeogeography, with the stages of a theosophical 
round lasting 4,320,000,000 years, or a kalpa in Hindu chronology. 15 

Why did theosophy become such an important part of List’s gnosis? 
One solution is provided by its contemporary vogue and the fact that 
many supporters of the List Society were interested in the occult. 
Friedrich Wannieck was both an ardent spiritualist and a firm believer 
in the theosophical mahatmas, Morya and Koot Hoomi; 16 General 
Blasius von Schemua (1856-1920) had been associated with the 



54 




WOTANISM AND GERMANIC THEOSOPHY 

mystical school of Alois Mailander at Darmstadt since 1890, whose 
followers included Franz Hartmann and Wilhelm Hiibbe-Schleiden. 
Schemua was a prominent theosophist and also a friend of Demeter 
Georgiewitz-Weitzer (1873-1949), who edited the Zentralblatt fur 
Okkultismus and wrote several occult works under the pseudonym G. 
W. Surya; 17 Max Seiling had written a study of Mailander and other 
books about spiritualism and occultism; Friedrich Schwickert ( 1 857 — 
1 930) was interested in the work of Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton and 
wrote a study about the elixir of life. He became one of the leading 
astrologers in Weimar Germany; 18 Karl Heise was a Swiss member of 
the Mazdaznan cult and, together with his brother Heinrich, ran a 
commune called ‘Aryana’ near Zurich; 19 Wladimir von Egloffstein 
dabbled in chronological speculations about cycles and wrote an 
esoteric history of the Church. Finally, there wasjorg Lanz-Liebenfels, 
whose own brand of racist occultism owed much to theosophy. List 
borrowed several ideas from the younger man: the occult significance 
of the Templars, the manichaean struggle between the master- races 
(the Ario-Germans) and the slave races (non-Aryans) and a theory 
about the original homeland of the Aryans, a vanished polar continent 
called Arktogaa. 20 

What theosophy offered to these individuals, whose intellect, 
education and social circumstances made it at all appealing, was an 
integrated view of the world, in which the present was understood in 
terms of a remote past. This imaginary past legitimated a variety of 
social, political, and cultural ideals such as racism, magic, and 
hierophantic elitism, which were all negations of the modern world. 
Although this legitimation was not traditional, inasmuch as it was 
mythological, it was a legitimation that included the apparently 
scientific findings of the present, a sense of meaning in society and 
history, and supernatural references. This perspective was likely to 
appeal to people for whom a variety of contemporary developments 
were disturbing. At best, these occult beliefs might bolster and justify 
resistance to processes of social change. At worst, they provided a 
fantasy world, in respect of which the present could be lamented and 
the possessors of the true gnosis could comfort themselves in their 
assumed superior wisdom. 



55 




5 

The Armanenschaft 



LIST’S political mythology of a Wotanist priesthood invoked the 
political authority of initiates, both in the prehistoric social order and 
in the modern world. This idea was first formulated in his lectures and 
articles of the 1 890s, but it had emerged as a principal element of his 
fantasy by 1908. The word ‘ Armanenschaft which List applied to his 
ancient hierarchy, can be traced to his spurious adaptation of a Teutonic 
myth related by Tacitus in his Germania.' According to the Roman 
author, the ancient Germans had preserved an account of their origins 
in traditional songs. These songs celebrated an earth-born god Tuisco 
and his son Mannus as the founders of their race. To Mannus they 
assigned three sons, after whom the three constituent tribes of ancient 
Germany took their names: the coastal tribes were called ‘Ingaevones’; 
those of the interior, ‘Hermiones’; and the remainder, ‘Istaevones’. 
Contrary to Tacitus and other classical historians who had attempted 
to identify these tribes with known appellations, List claimed that 
these names denoted social estates within the Ario-Germanic nation. 2 
He claimed that the ‘Ingaevones’, the ‘Hermiones’ and the ‘Istaevones’ 
represented the agricultural, the intellectual and the military estates. It 
was the intellectual estate, a body of priest- kings, that formed the basis 
of List’s political fantasy. He germanized the word ‘Hermiones’ to 
‘Armanen’, meaning the heirs of the sun-king, while their priesthood 
was called the ' Armanenschaft J . 3 

The priest-kings were allegedly responsible for all government and 
education in ancient society, offices which were legitimized by their 
profound wisdom. This wisdom was defined by the gnosis of 
Germanic theosophy. The possession of this gnosis was regarded as 
the absolute and sacred legitimation of the initiates’ political authority, 
while society was stratified according to each class’s degree of 
initiation into the gnosis. List emphasized that this gnosis was not 



56 




THE ARMANENSCHAFT 



equally accessible to all members of society. He alluded to a two-tier 
system of exoteric and esoteric instruction in the gnosis. Exoteric 
doctrine (Wotanism) assumed the popular form of myths and 
parabolic tales intended for the lower social classes, while esoteric 
doctrine (Armanism) was-concerned with the mysteries of the gnosis 
and was restricted to trainees for high office. Since the Armanenschaft 
was the body responsible for education, such a segregation would 
have been simply administered. 4 

List’s description of the Armanenschaft structure borrowed concepts 
from Freemasonry and Rosicrucianism. The elite priesthood was 
divided into three grades, corresponding to the grades of Entered 
Apprentice, Fellow Craft and Master Mason in lodge hierarchy. Each 
grade represented a certain degree of initiation into the gnosis. With a 
clear image of masonic ritual in mind, List claimed that each grade of 
the ancient priesthood had its own particular signs, grips and 
passwords. A novice spent seven years learning the Edda and 
elementary theosophy, before proceeding to the grade of brother. At 
this stage in his training he travelled to other Armanist centres, in 
order to gain working experience as a priest, governor and educator. 
After seven years in this grade, a suitably qualified brother might 
proceed to the grade of master as a full initiate. He was then privy to 
the ultimate secrets of the gnosis, which could not be communicated 
by language: List characterized these secrets by such occult formulae 
as ‘the lost master-word’, ‘the unutterable name of God’ and ‘the 
philosopher’s stone’, culled from masonic, cabbalistic and alchemical 
lore of the eighteenth century, or the ‘ 4F] Arehisosur R4 ’, his own 
Gothic motto formed by the five vowels. 5 Freemasonry thus provided 
List with a model for an hierarchical priesthood whose power derived 
from initiation. 

Besides defining the authority of a master over his subordinate 
brothers, this gnostic gradation underpinned the collective authority 
of the Armanenschaft over the profane majority. The Armanenschaft was 
alleged to have enjoyed ‘superior privileges’ and possessed an ‘exalted 
and holy status’ among the people. 6 They predominated in all affairs 
of government, while the king and nobility were drawn from a 
superior college of masters. Since the gnosis of the priesthood 
combined science, religion and law, its members exercised total 
authority as teachers, priests and judges. 7 The Armanist centres or 
‘high places’ (Halgadome) were the seat of government, the school and 
the lawcourt. 8 All authority was invested with the absolute legitimacy 
of sacredness. 9 



57 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

In his account of the history of the Amianenschaft, List continued to 
draw on the occult materials of Rosicrucianism, alchemy, the military 
religious orders and Freemasonry. He claimed that the Armanenschaft, 
following its suppression in ancient Germany, had survived up until 
the present, inasmuch as its holy gnosis had been fostered by secret 
societies of Rosicrucians and Freemasons, chivalrous orders and the 
scholar magicians of the Renaissance who had championed the 
pursuit of hermetic and cabbalistic sciences. The link between these 
diverse groups lies in the modern occult revival’s debt to the tangled 
mythology of theosophists and secret societies in the eighteenth 
century. In order to appreciate List’s adoption of these groups as 
social agents of Armanism during its dark age, these mythologies 
require explanation. 

The story of these mystifications can be properly understood only 
in relation to the growth of irrationalism in the mid-eighteenth 
century. This trend was partly a reaction to the practical reforming 
attitude of enlightened absolute princes in Germany, which appeared 
to interfere with traditional legal privilege, ecclesiastical immunities 
or popular prejudice. Enlightened reform represented a threat to 
many people because its changes destroyed long accepted status and 
cultural values. Such people found a handy ideological weapon 
against such innovating tendencies in irrationalism. There were also 
older sources of the new irrationalism: traditional religious affiliation, 
pietism and the enduring fascination of a mystical key to the riddles of 
nature, which found expression in the traditional occult sciences. The 
new irrationalism was thus a product of the revaluation of the emotive 
and intuitive faculties, coupled with a fearful distrust of analytical 
reason, materialism and empiricism. This spiritual mood, widespread 
in Germany, generated many sects and societies concerned with the 
occult and mysterious during the second half of the eighteenth 
century. These groups were responsible for a revival of interest in the 
arcane materials of alchemy, Rosicrucianism and Freemasonry. 10 

The origins of Rosicrucianism lie at the beginning of the seventeenth 
century when two anonymous Rosicrucian manifestoes and the 
related Chymische Hochzeit of Johann Valentin Andreae (1586-1654) 
were printed at Kassel. These manifestoes announced the existence of 
a secret brotherhood, which desired a ‘universal and general reformation 
of the whole wide world’. The brotherhood was putatively founded by 
Christian Rosenkreutz, a German mystic who was supposed to have 
lived from 1 378 to 1 484. This reformation was to be achieved through the 
union of Protestantism with magic, alchemy, and cabbalism in concert 



58 




THE ARMANENSCHAFT 



with contemporary advances in medical and scientific knowledge. 
Frances Yates has argued that the manifestoes express hopes that focused 
on Frederick II, the Elector of the Palatine, as a ‘politico-religious leader 
destined to solve the problems of the age’, while their contents 
represented a kind of hermetic revival among Protestant intellectuals at a 
time when the original hermetic impulses of the fifteenth century 
Renaissance had waned." The attraction of such a project at a time of 
violent ideological and religious antagonism before the Thirty Years War 
is obvious. From these seventeenth-century origins of mystical pietism, 
utopian hope and hermetic-cabbalistic ideas, the Rosicrucian myth 
continued to fascinate many intellectuals who felt drawn to its quest for 
secret knowledge and the promise of moral renewal. Klaus Epstein has 
noted that the myth attracted conservatives particularly, since it 
emphasized the value of traditional wisdom for future development. 12 

While the Rosicrucians of the early seventeenth century were only 
pardy concerned with alchemy, the later revivals of the myth laid great 
stress on their claims to possess the secrets of transmutation and the 
knowledge of the ‘ philosopher’ s stone’ or elixir of life. In 1 7 1 0 a work 
was published in Breslau with the arcane title Die warhaffte und 
vollkommene Bereitung des Philosophischen Steins der Bruderschaft aus dem 
Orden des Gulden- und Rosen- Creutzes. Its author was ‘Sincerus Renatus’, 
in reality Sigmund Richter, a pastor in Silesia, who had studied the 
writings of Paracelsus and Jakob Boehme. In the light of other 
documentary finds around Central Europe, Christopher McIntosh 
has suggested that a widespread alchemical movement existed under 
the appellation Gold- und Rosenkreuz during the second half of the 
eighteenth century. In either 1747 or 1757 a quasi-masonic Rosicrucian 
order of this name was founded at Berlin, with a hierarchy of nine 
grades based on the cabbalistic Tree of Life. This organization 
acquired some political significance, since it counted King Frederick 
William II and his prime minister, Johann Christoph von Wollner, 
among its brothers in the late 1780s. The ideology of the order 
blended mysticism with conservative and anti-Enlightenmentattitudes. ls 

List was familiar with Rosicrucian materials, inasmuch as he used 
the ten-grade cabbalistic hierarchy peculiar to some Rosicrucian 
orders. He may have gleaned this idea from Franz Hartmann, who 
was probably familiar with the Rosicrucian structure of the Order of 
the Golden Dawn in England as a result of his contact with Theodor 
Reuss, who had founded in 1902 irregular masonic and Rosicrucian 
lodges in Germany with the authority of William Westcott, a founder 
member of the Golden Dawn. 14 In any event, literature about the 



59 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Rosicrucians was abundant at the beginning of the century in 
Germany. Both Franz Hartmann and Rudolf Steiner had written 
about them, while a reprint of a late eighteenth-century alchemical- 
rosicrucian text was published in Zillmann’s periodical during 1905. 15 
When List made the further claim that the Rosicrucians of the 
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries had been agents of the Armanist 
gnosis, he was thus recruiting a mysterious and durable body of 
adepts for his secret tradition. Besides the response this would enjoy 
from theosophists, one must consider the ambition of the original 
Rosicrucians. In a Listian context, the ‘universal and general reformation’ 
connoted a national revival through the rediscovery of traditional 
Ario-Germanic wisdom. 

Before examining the putative Templarist survival of Armanism, 
the involvement of the Knights Templars with occultism must be 
mentioned. This complex story introduces two distinct Templar 
mythologies: the medieval Templar legends and their confusion with 
Freemasonry in the eighteenth century. Founded in 1 1 18, the original 
Knights T emplars were a crusading military religious order which was 
forced to leave the Holy Land in 1291. The order subsequently 
became the victim of a slanderous campaign mounted by the King of 
France, who coveted their wealth and influence within his realm. He 
accused the Templars of satanic practices, certain perversions and 
blasphemies, including the worship of a huge idol fashioned in the 
shape of a human head. Because of these alleged calumnies the order 
was ruthlessly suppressed and its leaders burnt in 1314. Despite the 
probable falsehood of the charges against them, the historical record 
surrounded the memory of the Templars with a mysterious and 
heretical aura. 16 This medieval suppression had a certain influence 
upon the masonic adoption of the Templars. 

At the beginning of the eighteenth century the institutions of 
modern Freemasonry arose. It should be emphasized that this new 
organization of meeting-houses was institutionally linked with the old 
working lodges of operative masons and master-builders, which dated 
from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The Freemasons had 
begun joining the operative lodges at the end of the seventeenth 
century to form an organization in which the professional and upper 
classes could discuss contemporary affairs and business in an en- 
lightened and congenial atmosphere. The new institution inherited 
the ritual of the older, in that craft traditions became the allegories and 
symbols of a deistic and fraternal doctrine. After its official foundation 
in England in 1717, Freemasonry soon migrated to a Continental 



60 




THE ARMANENSCHAFT 



setting. It was in Germany, where the growth of deviant masonic rites 
was greatest owing to the profusion of mystical and theosophical sects, 
that Freemasonry became confused with a Templar heritage. 

Although the idea of chivalric Freemasonry first occurred around 
1737 in France, the first Templar rite was introduced in Germany in 
1755 by Baron Gotthelf von Hund (1722-76). Calling his order the 
Rite of Strict Observance, Hund claimed to possess secret Templar 
documents dating from the time of their suppression, which allegedly 
proved that his order represented the legal Templar succession. Hund 
speculated that the Templars had been privy to the secrets of the 
Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem, which was held to be the origin of 
the Craft. It has been suggested that this chivalric mystification of 
Freemasonry arose with the express purpose of conferring aristocratic 
origins upon a middle-class institution with a humble craft background. 1 7 

Masonic and occultist interest in the Templars during the late 
eighteenth century influenced scholarship regarding the beliefs and 
practices of the historical Templars. Attention was focused on their 
alleged blasphemies, especially the worship of the idolatrous head, in 
an attempt to relate Templar heresy to exotic religions. One particular 
account of the head in the trial documents called it ‘Baphomet’, which 
was interpreted as a reference to a Muslim deity. This name was also 
associated with the gnostic cult of the Ophites, which had flourished in 
the first few centuries AD. J osef von Hammer- Purgstall suggested that 
the idol derived from surviving conventicles of the cult, with which the 
Templars had supposedly come into contact during their domicile in 
the eastern Mediterranean area. 18 

These mythologies entered late nineteenth-century occultism 
through the influential writings of the French occultist Eliphas Levi 
(181 0-7 5), whose writings on magic were studied by Blavatsky. 19 The 
Templars were once again credited with the possession of arcane 
knowledge. Occult Templarism flourished among quasi-masonic 
orders and at least two specifically Templar orders were founded on 
the Continent around 1900. The Ordo Templi Orientis (OTO) 
originated in the irregular masonic activities of Tbeodor Reuss, Franz 
Hartmann and Karl Kellner between 1895 and 1906; the racist Ordo 
Novi Templi (ONT) was founded by Lanz von Liebenfels around 
1907. 20 

List most probably derived his occult conception of the Templars 
from a masonic source, but his notion was also coloured by the poetic 
grail-mythology of Parsival which inspired Lanz. 21 He exploited these 
myths in order to claim that the medieval Templars had been another 



61 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

secret agent of the Armanist gnosis during the benighted Christian 
epoch. List concluded that the ‘Baphomet’ idol was not a head but a 
gnostic sigil. According to List, this sigil was the Maltese Cross, formed 
by the skewed superimposition of the clockwise and anti-clockwise 
swastikas. He claimed that the Templars had been put to death for 
their worship of this most sacred Ario-Germanic symbol, and that the 
later masonic orders of Templarist inspiration had also fostered the 
gnosis. List claimed that the Templars and Rosicrucians ‘represented 
the higher grades of the secret priesthood, the spiritual and aristocratic 
tendency, while the Freemasons signified lower grades . . . the 
democratic tendency’. 22 But besides the elitist connotations of 
chivalry, the Templars were important in another respect. Because 
they had been persecuted for their beliefs, List could more plausibly 
contend that there had been a conspiracy against any revival of ancient 
Germanic religion and its priesthood. 

In his short essay ‘Das Mittelalter im Armanentum’, List described 
a further group of Armanist secret agents. These were the Renaissance 
humanists, whose interests had focused on the rediscovery of the 
Hermetic texts. Specifically mentioned by List were Pico della 
Mirandola (1463-94) and Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) in Italy, and 
Johann Reuchlin (1455-1522), Johann Trithemius (1462-1516) and 
Agrippa von Nettesheim (1486-1535) in Germany. List claimed that 
their revival of neo-Platonist and hermetic-cabbalistic ideas marked 
an efflorescence of the ancient national gnosis following the weakening 
of the Catholic stranglehold in medieval Europe. 23 List had already 
copied ‘Aryan’ magic sigils from the cryptographic works of Trithemius 
and lauded Agrippa as an ‘old Armanist’. 24 However, it was his 
exploitation of Reuchlin that lent most plausibility to his fantasy of 
modern Armanist tradition. 

Reuchlin has been acclaimed as the father of German humanism 
for his pioneering work on Greek and Hebrew texts. Educated at 
several universities, Reuchlin initially qualified as a lawyer and 
entered service at the court of Wiirttemberg in 1482. He was ennobled 
for his services by Emperor Maximilian in 1 494. During a visit to Italy 
Reuchlin had met Pico della Mirandola, who encouraged him to study 
Hebrew. Reuchlin subsequertdy developed those ideas which estab- 
lished him as the German representative of Renaissance cabbalism. 
He was convinced that the philosophy of Plato had its origins in the 
Jewish mystical books of the Cabbala. These theories were advanced 
in his treatises De verbo mirifico (1494) and De arte cabbalistica (1517). 
Besides his interest in Jewish mysticism, Reuchlin also wrote original 



62 




THE ARMANENSCHAFT 



studies of the Hebrew language, which paved the way for biblical 
scholarship based on the oldest sources, while confirming his 
reputation as a humanist who respected the contributions of other 
religious traditions besides Christianity. 

Around 1510 Johann Pfefferkorn demanded that the Jews of 
Germany should have their holy books confiscated by the Church in a 
campaign to force them to convert to Christianity. His demands 
enjoyed the support of an anti-Semitic ecclesiastical party at Cologne. 
Reuchlin scorned this kind of religious intolerance and lampooned 
the arguments of the anti-Semites, only to be accused of heresy by the 
Dominicans of Cologne. The controversy dragged bitterly on until 
1520, when Reuchlin was cleared of these charges. It was Reuchlin’s 
defence of the Jewish texts which led List to believe that he was an 
initiate of the Armanist gnosis. List claimed that the original priest- 
kings had entrusted their gnosis verbally to the rabbis of Cologne 
during the eighth century, in order to safeguard its survival during a 
wave of Christian persecution. The rabbis had then set these secrets 
down in cabbalistic books which were erroneously thought to 
represent a Jewish mystical tradition. The Cologne controversy thus 
made Reuchlin look as if he was trying to save these very books from 
the anti-Armanist Church. 25 In this way List cast Reuchlin in the role 
of a great Armanist reformer struggling against a Catholic conspiracy 
to suppress the gnosis. List’s veneration of Reuchlin even extended to 
the belief that he himself was the reincarnation of the sixteenth- 
century humanist. 26 

The Templars, Renaissance humanists, cabbalists and Rosicrucians 
were thus enlisted in the ranks of an imaginary heritage stretching 
back from the modern Armanists like List and his followers to the 
persecuted priest-kings, whose political authority had lapsed at the 
time of Christianization in early medieval Germany. This secret 
tradition bridged the gap formed by the Christian epoch between the 
ancient dispensation and its future revival. By claiming that the 
Armanenschaft had never been destroyed, but had survived in secret 
conventicles, List could suggest that his own cult was the surviving 
remnant of the hierophantic political tradition, which had to be 
revived in order that a glorious pan-German realm could be established 
in Europe. 

List’s blueprint for a new pan-German empire was detailed and 
unambiguous. It called for the ruthless subjection of non- Aryans to 
Aryan masters in a highly structured hierarchical state. The qualification 
of candidates for education or positions in public service, the 



63 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



professions and commerce rested solely on their racial purity. The 
heroic Ario-Germanic race was to be relieved of all wage-labour and 
demeaning tasks, in order to rule as an exalted elite over the slave 
castes of non- Aryan peoples. 27 List codified a set of political principles 
for the new order: strict racial and marital laws were to be observed; a 
patriarchal society was to be fostered in which only the male head of 
the house had full majority and only Ario-Germans enjoyed the 
privileges of freedom and citizenship; each family was to keep a 
genealogical record attesting its racial purity; a new feudalism was to 
develop through the creation of large estates which could not be 
broken up but inherited only by the first-born male in a family. 28 
These ideas, published as early as 1 9 1 1 , bear an uncanny resemblance 
to the Nuremberg racial laws of the 1930s and the Nazi vision of the 
future. 

But List went further still, anticipating the mystical elitism of the SS 
in Nazi Germany. The hierarchical structure of Ario-Germanic society 
was based on the cabbalistic Tree of Life. 29 This occult system of ten 
grades of successively higher initiation into gnostic mysteries served as 
the basis of the new order. In List’s scheme, the two lowest grades 
denoted the individual and his family, which were in turn subordinate 
to five specified levels of Armanist authority. Above these there 
existed three supreme grades, whose absolute authority corresponded 
to the analogous location of the three highest sefiroth on the Tree 
‘beyond the veil of the abyss’. According to List, the eighth grade 
comprised the higher nobility, while the ninth was occupied only by 
the king and his immediate circle. The tenth grade symbolized God. 
List emphasized the mystical equivalence of the ascending and 
descending grades and interpreted the traditional cabbalistic motto 
‘As above, so below’ to mean that the Aryan is a god-man. 30 This 
application of the Tree to a political hierarchy thus located the seat of 
authority in a sacred zone. While ancient Germanic society was 
claimed to have been a theocratic state, so the new order was to 
comprise a special elite, whose power was holy, absolute and 
mysterious. List’s ideal state was a male order with an occult chapter. 31 
The similarities with Himmler’s plans for an SS order-state are 
striking. 

Documentary evidence proves that List and the members of his 
HAO relished their sense of membership of a secret elite. List styled 
himself the Grand Master of the order and was addressed thus by his 
followers, 32 while other tides were conferred on members in accordance 
with the hierarchical grades of the ancient priesthood. Bernhard 



64 




THE ARMANENSCHAFT 



Koerner was known as the Arz-Femo-Aithari, and List also used the 
dignity of Arz-Wiho-AithariP Both these titles denoted councillors in 
the ninth grade of the cabbalistic hierarchy. Subordinate only to God 
and king, these councillors formed the supreme chapter of the 
priesthood. Initiate status was also ritually celebrated by means of 
esoteric glyphs upon funerary monuments: Heinrich Winter was 
buried at Hamburg beneath a rough-hewn stone bearing the swastika 
in 1911; an entire tumulus with a glyph-ornamented column was 
designed for Friedrich Oskar Wannieck in 1914; Georg Hauerstein sen. 
set a swastika- inscribed headstone upon the grave of his first wife at 
Isernhagen near Hanover in the same year. 34 

The HAO addressed itself to the male sex, the upper and middle 
classes, and all German patriots in the historically Germ an- settled 
lands of Central and Eastern Europe. List urged the contemporary 
aristocracy in particular to resist the pro-Slav interests and democratic 
tendencies of the contemporary Austrian state and to regard themselves 
as the heirs of the old priest- kings. List was also a staunch supporter of 
the Habsburg monarchy and imperial dynasty, which he wished to 
transform into the figure-head of a new Armanist empire. 35 All these 
exhortations demonstrate his concern to awaken German nationalist 
consciousness among the nobility and other groups whose traditional 
status was threatened by the growth of non-German political influence 
in Austria. 

The myth of an occult elite is not new in European ideology. It has 
been a perennial theme of post-Enlightenment occultism, which 
attempts to restore the certainties and security of religious orthodoxy 
within a sectarian context. Baron von Hund had invoked ‘unknown 
superiors’ for his Rite of Strict Observance, Westcott provided for a 
third order of ‘Secret Chiefs’ in the Golden Dawn, and Blavatsky spoke 
of the secret masters of the ‘Great White Lodge’: all these occult 
authorities fall within the same tradition. 36 The hidden elite confers an 
unaccountable authority upon the visible representatives of the cult. 
The imaginary priest- kings of the past similarly endorsed List’s claims 
to secret knowledge and special authority. At the same time, the 
putative existence of a modern Armanenschaft suggested to believers 
that the golden age might be soon restored, and that Germany and 
Austria would be united in a theocratic pan-German realm, wherein 
non-German interests would play no part. Within thirty-five years this 
vision was instituted as the foreign policy of the Third Reich. 



65 




6 

The Secret Heritage 



List, echoing contemporary Pan-German sentiment, was particularly 
concerned to associate the Austrian Germans with their compatriots 
in the Reich. It was important to him that the Armanenschaft and its 
politico- religious rule should have flourished in the Danubian region, 
as well as in Germany proper, since the earliest times. List accordingly 
challenged the conventional historical belief that the barbarian 
migrations had scattered the Celtic tribes of the region, and that it was 
Charlemagne who had first settled converted Germans on the eastern 
marches (Ostmark) of his large ninth-century empire. He claimed, on 
the contrary, that the region had witnessed a high development of 
Ario-Germanic culture several millennia before its Roman colonization 
(c. 100-375) and that the Wotanist religion had been continually 
practised until the imposition of Christianity, principally through 
Charlemagne, whom he decried as the ‘slaughterer of the Saxons’ on 
account of his campaign of conversion on pain of death among the 
pagans of North Germany. 

List believed he had discovered the remnants of this universal 
armanist-wotanist dispensation all round his native country. Despite 
the ravages of many centuries, compounded by Christian obliteration, 
he claimed to discern the vague outlines and scanty relics of a vast 
forgotten culture both throughout and beyond the German- settled 
areas of Austria. He found these relics in material archaeological 
monuments (tumuli, megaliths, hill-forts and castles on earlier pagan 
sites); in the local names of woods, rivers, hills and fields, many of 
which dated from pre-Carolingian times and allegedly recalled the 
names of gods and goddesses in the Germanic pantheon; and in the 
many legends, folk-tales and customs through which the common 
country folk were supposed, albeit unconsciously, to inherit and pass 
on the pale and distorted reflection of ancient Ario-Germanic 



66 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 



religious parables and doctrines. By means of his discoveries in these 
three areas of local historical and folkloristic research, List sought to 
convince his readers that the western or ‘Austrian’ half of the 
Habsburg empire could look back upon a German pagan and 
national past of immemorial antiquity. 

List’s vision of the prehistoric past owed litde to empirical methods 
of historical research. His surmises depended rather upon the 
clairvoyant illumination that certain places induced in his mind. After 
walking up the Hermannskogel to the north of Vienna, and again 
while sleeping out overnight on the Geiselberg hill-fort, List fell into a 
trance and witnessed the heroic and religious events that had allegedly 
passed in these places centuries before . 1 Armed with this faculty, List 
was able to divine countless sites of former Armanist association in the 
Lower Austrian countryside, along the River Danube, high upon the 
Alps and in Vianiomina (Vienna), the holy Teutonic city of old. The 
tumuli at Gross Mugl and Deutsch-Altenburg, likewise the hill-forts of 
Gotschenberg, Leisserberg and Oberganserndorf, were all recruited 
for his list of sanctuaries dedicated to the old faith . 2 The town of Ybbs 
was, according to List, founded upon a shrine to the Teutonic goddess 
Isa; the dreary ruins of Aggstein recalled the evil spirit Agir, while the 
village of St Nikola lay upon the site of a sanctuary named after Nikuz, 
the lord of the water-sprites . 3 South of the Danube near Melk, List 
discerned a huge Armanist temple stretching over many square miles: 
he regarded the Osterburg, Burg Hohenegg and the woodland church 
at Mauer as stations in a religious complex which focused on a 
sacrificial stone, now serving as a plinth for a saint’s statue beside the 
Zeno brook . 4 This exploitation of pre-historic monuments, human 
settlements and medieval castles for his stock of Armanist Halgadome 
(high places) represented a personal mythology, by means of which 
List imposed a set of modern German nationalist meanings upon 
cultural objects. Through this occult interpretation, List sought to 
nationalize the ancient past in accordance with contemporary Pan- 
German ideology. 

List pursued similar speculations in the case of place-names, which 
allegedly celebrated the old Germanic religion. He claimed that the 
god Wotan had been immortalized in such village-names as Wutter- 
wald, Wulzendorf, Wultendorf and Wilfersdorf, while his wife Frigga 
(also known as Holla or Freya) was remembered in such place-names 
as Hollenburg, Hollabrunn, Hollarn, Frauendorf and Frauenburg. 
Because many of the old pagan shrines had probably not been 
destroyed, but merely newly consecrated and re-dedicated to Christian 



67 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

saints, in conformity with early missionary policy, List was convinced 
that place-names containing the words Michael, Rupprecht, Peter and 
Maria denoted theold deities Wotan, Hruoperaht, Donarand Frigga. 5 
Armed with this interpretative key to place-names, List was able to 
trace an extended network of shrines and sanctuaries dedicated to the 
gods of the Wotanist religion across the map of modern Austria. 

More fruitful and far richer as a source of evidence for the former 
armanist-wotanist culture of Austria were the numerous popular 
legends and folk-tales in which List had taken an interest since his 
childhood. He suggested that the stock figures and motifs in fairy-tales 
and nursery rhymes such as the ogre, the sleeping emperor, the wild 
huntsman, and the ratcatcher reflected the parables and teachings of 
the formerly universal Wotanist religion. 6 When List heard specific 
folk-tales describing vanished castles, the offspring of supernatural 
and mortal unions, fratricides, lost lovers, or half-human creatures, he 
would trace their elements back to the fables of Teutonic mythology 
and their cosmic significance as symbols for the winter-gods, sun- 
gods, spring-goddesses and the goddess of Death in the old Ario- 
Germanic nature- religion . 1 The same interpretations could be 
applied to popular customs. In a work specifically devoted to the rites 
of the Ario-Germans, List traced a wide range of legal antiquities and 
common law practices relating to local jurisdictions and their officers, 
fines, ordeals, penalties and ceremonial back to ancient Armanist 
procedures. 8 

Having indicated the former existence of a universal German pagan 
culture by means of these relics, List sought to increase the plausibility 
and significance of his golden- age myth by explaining the downfall of 
the ideal Armanist world in terms of a real and historical institution. 
Owning to his strong sympathies with the Los von Rom movement, 
Georg von Schonerer’s anti-Catholic campaign begun in 1898, List 
achieved this end with a conspiracy-theory that identified Christianity 
as the negative and destructive principle in the history of the Ario- 
Germanic race. If it could be shown that Christian missionaries had 
been intent upon the destruction of Armanist culture, its actual non- 
existence in the present could be related to empirical events, while 
reproaching the neglect of German national interests in modern 
Austria. List’s account of Christianization in the historic German 
lands reiterated the debilitation of Teutonic vigour and morale and 
the destruction of German national consciousness. He claimed that 
the Church’s gospel of love and charity had encouraged a deviation 
from the strict eugenics of ‘the old Aryan sexual morality’, while its 



68 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 



new ecclesiastical foundations had blurred the Gaue (traditional ethnic 
provinces), in order to confuse the Germans in respect of political 
loyalties and obedience. Lastly, the withdrawal of all educational and 
religious facilities from the vanquished Germans had reduced them to 
the level of a helot people. 

These moral and political enormities could have been achieved 
only through the annihilation of the national leadership. According to 
List, Christian missionary activities began with the humiliation of the 
Armanenschaft and ended with its outright persecution. The sanctuaries 
were closed down as centres of worship, education and government, 
thus removing the institutional basis of Armanist authority. Expro- 
priated and impoverished, the priest- kings were compelled to wander 
through a land which neither recognized their status nor valued their 
holy gnosis anymore. Many of them fled to Scandinavia or Iceland, 
while those remaining in Central Europe assumed the status of a 
pariah caste, subsisting as tinkers, gypsies and strolling players . 9 
Christianity completed its suppression of the Armanenschaft by its 
absolute vilification. According to the new faith, the old faith had been 
the instrument of Satan. Abandoned ‘high places’ were shunned as the 
‘castles of Antichrist’; the priest-kings were mythicized into warlocks; 
the runes acquired the stigma of sorcery; the ancient celebrations were 
conceived of as a sabbath by the medieval mind, while those who 
persisted in the old confession were burnt as heretics or witches. 

That the Church had demonized the (imaginary) national priest- 
hood was the ultimate charge in List’s own polemic against Christianity. 
But it was he who had demonized the Church as the sole source of evil 
in a pan-German scheme of belief. Religious conversiorxby missionaries 
or by force (in the case of Charlemagne and the Saxons) represented 
the most vicious assault upon national integrity ever witnessed, for 
‘when the Germans had been completely barbarized . . . the Vicar of 
God ensconced himself upon the bastion of his subjects’ artificially 
induced stupidity and ruled over a shamefully demoralized people 
which was almost ignorant of its nationality ’. 10 Only a conspiracy of 
such magnitude, entailing a colossal process of national dissolution, 
could satisfactorily account for the decay of Armanist culture and the 
downfall of the traditional world. 

From medieval times onward the subjugated Germans had learnt 
of their past only through mendacious foreign accounts. These 
‘vicious reports from Roman, Greek and Frankish pens’ assured the 
Germans that they had existed in a woefully primitive state before the 
advent of Christianity. The combined weight of Western historical 



69 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

scholarship relegated them to the status of a cultural latecomer in 
Europe. Confronted by the fact of Germany’s retarded national 
unification, List invoked his specious occult history to prove the 
opposite. Because the alleged Christian conspiracy had tried to 
obliterate all traces of the Armanist past, it followed that its relics 
would be obscure and inaccessible to the majority of people in the 
modern world. At this point occultism made its logical appearance in 
his thought. In order to ensure some dialogue between his myths and 
the present, List ascribed occult meanings to many familiar cultural 
materials. These materials possessed an accepted ordinary meaning, 
but once List had revalued them with an occult meaning, they 
endorsed his own fantasy of the Armanist past. We have already seen 
that List’s stock of occult Armanist relics included prehistoric monu- 
ments, place-names, popular folk-tales and customs. But these 
artefacts and traditions simply posited an unconscious survival of 
former Armanist culture in a diluted, distorted and misunderstood 
form. List claimed that there also existed a consciously cultivated 
secret Armanist heritage, which had been started with the explicit 
expectation of an Armanist restoration at the end of the Christian 
epoch. 

List’s account of the secret Armanist heritage returns us to the time 
when the German tribes were subject to enforced conversion to 
Christianity. The priest-kings had soon realized the inevitable outcome 
of this process and consequendy set about the creation of secret 
societies, which would be responsible for fostering the holy gnosis 
during the Christian era. Within conventicles known as Kalander, the 
national priesthood translated all records of their wisdom into a secret 
language called the Kala or hochheilige heimliche Acht, which was 
comprehensible only to initiates. 1 1 This language enabled the fugitive 
priest-kings to communicate metaphysical and religious material 
surreptitiously and to leave a record of their gnosis to posterity. List 
coined the verb verkalen to denote the translation of esoteric Armanist 
wisdom into an occult code of words, symbols, or gestures. This occult 
language, in the context of its re-translation, permitted List to 
interpret a very broad range of cultural material in confirmation of the 
hidden Armanist gnosis. 

Since Freemasonry and lodge hierarchy were the models for the 
priesthood, List extended this idea as a way of proving that the ancient 
wisdom had survived. He imagined the secret Kalander as the social 
precursors of the medieval corporations of guilds, akin to masonic 
lodges in their hierarchy of apprentice, journeyman, and master. The 



70 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 

medieval guilds typically possessed a craft secret, which protected its 
members from outside competition. List, however, suggested that 
these commercial craft secrets were a cover for the occult gnosis, the 
esoteric meaning of which was probably not even apparent to the 
members of the guilds, since the memory of the priest- kings had faded 
in the medieval mind. The three particular corporations of guildsmen, 
whom List cited as the conscious or unconscious carriers of tradition, 
comprised the skalds and minstrels, the heralds and masons, and 
lastly the officers of the secret medieval vehmgericht. Their respective 
‘kalic’ forms of the gnosis were medieval songs, heraldic devices 
and architectural decoration, and legal antiquities. 

List’s claim that a college of heralds had existed as a guild 
organization in the early medieval period was essential to his belief 
that such a corporation had safeguarded the ancient gnosis. The 
source of this fallacy is easily explained. Because heraldry signified a 
method of personal identification by means of hereditary marks 
borne on a shield, some historians have been tempted to date heraldry 
from the time when warriors first decorated their shields for battle. 
Formal heraldry dates from the second quarter of the twelfth century, 
when armorial bearings on shields began to be repeated in subsequent 
generations of the original bearer’s family. The utility of this practice 
in largely illiterate societies was considerable; because of the growth 
and complexity of the practice, kings founded colleges of heralds to 
administer the design and award of arms at the beginning of the 
fifteenth century. List’s interest in heraldry arose for three specific 
reasons. Firstly, he could claim that it was a practice deriving from pre- 
Christian times. Secondly, the colourful blazon could be interpreted 
as a graphical and occult form of the secret gnosis. Lastly, the 
genealogical nature and widespread use of heraldry connoted the 
survival of the esoteric tradition throughout the Christian epoch in all 
parts of Europe. 

List first advanced the theory that heraldic devices were based on 
the magical runes in 1 89 1 . He rejected the thesis of the historian Erich 
Gritzner, that the science dated back to the time of the Crusades, by 
demonstrating the correspondence between the heraldic divisions of 
the shield and the runic forms. 12 After his adoption of theosophical 
ideas in 1903, List adduced other supposedly Armanist sigils, including 
triskelions, swastikas, and sun-wheels, for the secret heraldic heritage. 
He expounded his theories in a series of articles in the Leipziger 
Illustrierte Zeitung between 1905 and 1907. In his treatise Das Geheimnis 
der Runen [The Secret of the Runes ] ( 1 908) he showed how the runic forms 



71 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



could be discerned in the heraldic divisions; their occultation arose 
from the fact that the non-initiate was distracted by the brightly 
tinctured fields of the shield, so that the dividing lines themselves 
were not apparent. The fa-rune Y corresponded to the blazon per 
pale sinister side bend sinister; the thurr-rune \> to a series of blazons 
incorporating the pile charge, and the gibor-rune (or swastika) to a 
variety of blazons based on kinked pale, fess and bend. Besides these 
runes, List also detected the swastika in several heraldic crosses. 13 

This was just a beginning. Assisted by Bernhard Koerner (1875- 
1952), a List Society member and an officer of the Royal Prussian 
College of Arms since 1903, List supplemented these modest claims 
with a heraldic manual, which demonstrated the presence of the 
remaining runes and numerous glyphs of Armanist provenance in at 
least five hundred coats-of-arms, many of which were still borne by 
the modern aristocracy of Germany and Austria. In this compendium 
of pictorial Armanist relics List developed an occult key to interpret 
the furs, tinctures, divisions and charges of almost any coat-of-arms. 
The three furs, pean, ermine and vair, identified the bearer of the arms 
as a member of the three ancient social estates, the farmers, the priest- 
kings and the warriors. Each colour and metal similarly corresponded 
to a specific concept in Armanist doctrine. Gules yielded the ‘kalic’ 
word moth, which denoted Ario-Germanic law; vert referred to hope 
and resurrection; argent symbolized knowledge, wisdom and God. 14 
From this system of correspondences List was able to decipher any 
heraldic device as a cryptic motto conveying the old gnosis. Some of 
his solutions were simple: the argent and azure gyrony charge in the 
Brockhausen arms was interpreted to mean ‘Heed the law and 
safeguard wisdom’, 15 but the esoteric meanings became more complex 
and less consistent when List introduced the magical sigils taken from 
the works of Johann Trithemius. List identified a heraldic device 
corresponding to the sign of the earth-spirit in Rembrandt’s etching 
‘The Magician’ (c.1632). This quartered escutcheon charge per saltire 
or and azure with twin orles in alternate gules, argent and sable meant 
‘I long for the illuminating Armanist salvation, wisdom and law, 
because the heavenly commandment issues from the darkness and 
God blesses from the light’. 16 List completed this arbitrary system of 
interpretation with occult meanings for the heraldic animals. He 
claimed that the dragon, eagle, worm, and lion symbolized the four 
elements, fire, air, water and earth, while the serpent stood for the fifth 
(theosophical) element of ether. Since the griffin was a synthetic 
creature, combining parts of the other animals, List concluded that it 
denoted the whole cosmos. 17 



72 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 

List’s materials were practically unlimited owing to Koerner’s 
tireless interest in heraldic occultism. The arms of states, towns and 
noble families were all interpreted as the secret cultural relics of the 
ancient order. Burgundy, Moravia, Silesia, and Carniola had enshrined 
the old gnosis in their state arms, while the civic arms of Cologne, 
Basle, and Mainz also possessed an esoteric meaning. The nobilities of 
Mecklenburg, Brandenburg, Styria, and Carinthia were likewise 
shown to be the traditional representatives of the old hierarchy on 
account of their coats-of-arms. 18 List multiplied such examples to 
posit the existence of a widespread Armanist counterculture through- 
out Central Europe and beyond. 

As the genealogical principle was the essence of heraldry' it followed 
logically that this secret heritage led to the contemporary aristocracy. 
The German aristocracy, whose political authority had been eroded 
since the French Revolution, might derive comfort from List’s 
exhortation that it was composed largely of ‘descendants of old 
hierocratic families’. 19 The secret gnosis in their arms was an esoteric 
legitimation of their hereditary authority against the populist and 
democratic tendencies of the modern age. Friedrich Freiherr von 
Gaisberg (1857-1932), a List Society member and a Wiirttemberg 
nobleman, was drawn to List’s occult legitimation of aristocratic 
authority. At the turn of the century he had founded the St Michael 
Association for the study of the peerage and the ‘preservation of their 
hereditary interests as an estate’. List dedicated one of his ‘research 
reports’ to Gaisberg and interpreted his coat-of-arms to mean 
‘Salvation! Laws are the principal gnosis of Armanism; the creative 
power of God shines out of the darkness’. 20 Such laws naturally 
guaranteed the authority of the aristocracy and held out the hope of its 
restitution. 

This heraldic and genealogical occultism did not appeal only to 
aristocrats. The contemporary existence of several groups devoted to 
the study of middle-class pedigrees indicates that List’s occult 
heraldry had a wider bourgeois audience. Bernhard Koerner had 
established a Roland Association at Berlin, having assumed the 
editorship of a twenty-volume handbook of middle-class genealogy 
from 1899. The Roland Association in Dresden under the chairman- 
ship of Hermann Unbescheid had pursued volkish research into 
heraldic matters sincejanuary 1902. Another group called theCentral 
Agency for German Family History was established by Hans Breymann 
at Leipzig in February 1904. 21 For the individuals who joined such 
groups, heraldry and genealogy connoted a search for idendty in the 



73 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

form of time-honoured tradition, a precious heritage and an imaginarily 
secure image of the feudal past. Heraldry conjured a colourful tableau 
of knights, feudal privileges and castles, an image which formed a 
pleasant antithesis to the socio-cultural tendencies of the present. This 
quest connoted a hunger for obsolescent social structure and political 
authority, which were undermined by the institutions of the modern 
world. One might recall that both List and Lanz were self-ennobling 
bourgeois. Given this middle-class fascination for seigneurial trap- 
pings, List’s heraldic occultism possessed considerable appeal. 

List’s architectural occultism was similar to that of heraldry with 
regard to both its forms and appeal. In 1889 he had suggested that the 
corbels on the west arch of St Stephen’s Cathedral made allegorical 
references to ancient doctrine. The mystifications of medieval masons 
allowed all stone sculpture to be treated as a secret ‘kalic’ code, the 
meaning of which had always remained a craft concern. This notion 
dated from a time when List was acquainted with Friedrich von 
Schmidt (d. 1891), the master-builder of the cathedral, from whom he 
gleaned a knowledge of operative masonic lore. 22 Once List adopted 
the theosophical sigils, he was able to extend this architectural 
occultism in a geometrical sense. According to List, the holy Armanist 
triskelion, swastika and other sigils could be detected in the design of 
late Gothic curvilinear tracery and rose windows dating from the 
fifteenth century. 23 The technical nature of this kind of occultism was 
most plausible, a fact borne out by its perennial appearance amongst 
occultists. 24 But the idea appealed for two further reasons. In the first 
place, contemporaries were familiar with the notion of masonic 
secrets, so that it seemed probable that medieval craftsman had 
worked their mysteries into the fabric of their creations for subsequent 
generations to decipher. Secondly, given the contemporary Gothic 
Revival in Germany, List’s suggestion that Gothic architecture con- 
tained ancient secrets would have found a readymade response. 25 He 
also emphasized the traditional atmosphere of the Armanist world 
with Gothic artwork and the occasional use of a bold Fraktur typeface 
in his publications. 

The vehmgericht constituted the last of List’s guilds and was 
supposed to have translated the holy Armanist gnosis into a ‘kalic’ 
form so that it might survive the Christian epoch. Since the vehmgericht 
really was a secret institution, founded to administer law in the Holy 
Roman Empire between the early thirteenth and sixteenth centuries, 
it seemed a most effective agent for List’s occult heritage. Vehmic law 
most probably originated in pre-Carolingian times, but it was not 



74 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 

until the late twelfth century that it assumed historical significance. At 
this time the imperial jurisdiction was being usurped by the new 
territorial princes, who were striving to assume the political authority 
of the old feudal estates. To counter this modern tendency the 
Archbishop of Cologne placed himself at the head of a long-standing 
system of local courts, which were to pass capital sentences in the 
name of the Emperor. An old parochial institution thus assumed a 
new historical role. From their origin in Westphalia these vehmgerichts 
soon spread throughout the Empire wherever conservative men 
sought to hinder the power of the princes. However, with the 
stabilization of political conditions, such a system of justice became 
superfluous. The vehmgericht was consequendy restricted to West- 
phalia at the beginning of the sixteenth century and finally abolished 
in 1811. 

The organization of the vehmgericht was based on the jurisdiction 
of coundess local courts. Sessions were held either publicly or in 
secret, attended only by the members of the particular court and the 
judge, to whom they owed allegiance, wherever they travelled in the 
Empire. New members were sworn to secrecy concerning all matters 
relating to the vehmgericht and took an oath that they would bring any 
case within the competence of the court to its notice. They were then 
initiated into the passwords and secret signs of the organization 
before being presented with the symbols of their office: a rope and a 
dagger inscribed with the letters S.S.G.G., which stood for the obscure 
vehmic motto ‘String, Stone, Grass, Green’. Henceforth, the novices 
would fight to maintain old feudal privileges against their usurpers 
and bring the offenders to trial. 

This was the historical reality of the vehmgericht, but it later 
became the subject of a romantic mythology. Owing to its secret 
means and traditional ends — the protection of historic rights against 
the centralizing tendencies of princely rule — the vehmgericht came to 
symbolize a heroic and radical institution to the authors and 
historians of the Romantic period. The now largely forgotten Gothic 
novels published in Germany between 1780 and 1820 were primarily 
responsible for the creation of an enduring popular image of the 
vehmgericht as a secret but powerful body exercising true justice 
against local despots and their lackeys in distant days of medieval 
strife. These Gothic tales dwelt upon the mystique of the secret courts. 
In the middle of the night an officer of the vehmgericht would fasten 
the summons to the door of the accused, or simply transfix it with his 
vehmic dagger upon the town-gates. In obedience to this summons 



75 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

the accused would then make his way to the appointed place. On a 
remote moonlit heath or at a lonely crossroad the vehmgericht 
gathered to judge the accused. If the man were innocent, he would be 
acquitted; if guilty, he would be hanged on the spot. Failure to appear 
in accordance with the summons would be taken as satisfactory proof 
of guilt. The fugitive would then be executed by vehmic assassins, who 
waylaid him outside low taverns, on woodland paths or wheresoever 
he tried to flee. 26 

List was quite familiar with this sensational image of the vehmgericht. 
In 1891 he described a vehmgericht session which was supposed to 
have occurred at the castle of Rauhenstein against this pseudo- 
medieval background; the summons, the dagger, secret passages, 
dungeons, torture-chambers and midnight gloom all served to make 
his secret Armanist guild both vivid and plausible to a popular 
audience. 27 Besides its familiarity, the vehmgericht possessed several 
other attributes, which made it a fitting historical vehicle for List’s 
occult tradition. In the first place, even academic historians admitted 
that the vehmgerichts had originally derived from local courts which 
dated back to pre-Christian times. List could therefore claim that the 
vehmgericht was a secret Armanist guild. Since administration and 
justice had been important functions of the priest-kings, it could be 
argued that the vehmgerichts represented a clandestine survival of 
Ario-Germanic law. List adduced many occult notions to prove this. 
The obscure letters on the vehmic dagger were reckoned to be a 
transliteration of a double sig- rune followed by two swastikas rMM , 
while the ‘kalic’ word moth (meaning law) suggested that any cultural 
feature which was either red (rot) or in the shape of a wheel (Rad) 
concealed the existence of a former vehmgericht. According to these 
irrational speculations, List believed that all the common red wayside 
crucifixes and wheelcrosses in Catholic regions of Central Europe 
marked the erstwhile locations of secret Armanist courts; he found 
these in abundance throughout Lower Austria, Bohemia, and even in 
the suburbs of Vienna. 28 

Secondly, the avowed purpose of the vehmgericht was appropriate 
to List’s secret tradition. He also attributed other ideological motives 
to the courts than had been the historical case. In 1905 List published 
a short account of a vehmgericht which was supposed to have held its 
sessions at Rothenkreuz near Stecky in the fifteenth century. This was 
the period of the Hussite wars and a time of lawlessness throughout 
Central Europe. From List’s account it is clear that he regarded these 
religious wars as a Czech campaign of attrition against the German 



76 




THE SECRET HERITAGE 

minorities of Bohemia. His vehmgericht acted accordingly as the 
defender of German rights against Czech tyranny. This projection of 
modern nationalist sentiment into the past was obviously addressed to 
contemporary German minorities. Published in the annual of a 
volkisch association in North Moravia, this tale would doubtless be seen 
as a vindication of its readers’ anti-Czech attitudes . 29 

The vehmgericht was an ideal agent for List’s hidden heritage. Its 
secret means connoted a mysterious elitism, but also implied a 
popular institution offering comfort to those who groaned beneath an 
upstart tyrant’s heel. Its relics could now be rediscovered and its 
function revived. The vehmgericht could rise again to restore order in 
a world where modern tendencies appeared to some individuals as a 
threat to their culture. List and his followers found satisfaction in this 
fantasy of a militant, omnipresent, yet hidden force that appeared to 
promise the restoration of a new pan- German empire. This fantasy 
was grimly fulfilled in the aftermath of the lost war when extreme 
right-wing nationalists, calling themselves vehmic assassins, murdered 
several politicians of the new German Republic. 

List had marshalled all sorts of occult evidence for the existence of a 
prehistoric national culture in the heart of the hereditary Habsburg 
lands. The archaeological monuments, the place-names, and the 
legends, folk-tales and customs of the Danubian region were interpreted 
in such a way as to prove that this part of Central Europe had 
participated in a universal and superior German civilization of great 
antiquity. List’s invocation of a secret, consciously created Armanist 
heritage in the form of heraldry, architectural decoration, and legal 
antiquities also progressed from the celebration of past Germanic 
glory to an analysis of the historic measures taken by the old priest- 
kings to ensure its eventual restoration. The occult meanings which he 
ascribed to these materials indicated the political testament and 
expectations of the last representatives of a lost unitary Ario-Germanic 
nation. The time for that restoration was now come. List’s secret 
heritage augured the imminent transformation of Austria and 
Germany into a new pan-German empire. 



77 




7 

The German Millennium 



Fritz Saxl, the German historian of Renaissance ideas, was an early 
observer of the renewed interest in fortune-telling at the beginning of 
the twentieth century. He dated its origins to around 1910, while 
noting that a number of periodicals devoted to astrology sprang up 
over the next decade in Germany, accompanied by textbooks, 
prophecies and reprints of astrological classics. In due course 
palmistry, numerology, cabbalism and tarot supplemented astrology 
to form the principal scientific bases of a popular divinatory movement 
which grew prodigiously in the 1920s. Saxl reflected that, although 
these sciences may be erroneous from a logical point of view, the 
imaginative or religious background of such a popular movement is of 
the greatest importance. A theoretical concern with the measurement 
of data for a system of correspondences between natural phenomena 
and human affairs retains a neutral scientific status, but its predictive 
tenor can be regarded legitimately as a function of human hopes and 
needs. Indeed, such foretelling of future events may become vitally 
important to individuals and groups that are subject to anxiety or 
deprivation. Saxl similarly regarded prophecy as a symptom of 
widespread social unease at a time when the traditional expectations 
of certain groups appeared to be frustrated. He considered its modern 
manifestation to be one of the omens of the First World War.' 

List’s prophecies were addressed collectively to the German nation 
and appeared to fulfil a similar function to individual fortune- telling. 
He foretold that an age of universal prosperity was approaching to 
alleviate the tribulations of German nationalists in Central Europe. 
This optimistic forward-looking attitude did not contradict his paeans 
to the past. The prophecy of a happy national future complemented 
his nostalgia for a lost golden age inasmuch as it denoted the 
restoration of his imaginary traditional world. Past and future 



78 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 



represented the twin poles of a counter-ideal in time generated by a 
profound disenchantment with the present; the secret Armanist 
heritage throughout the allegedly benighted Christian epoch formed 
a bridge between these two ideal ages; such Armanist survivals were 
both the relics of the old dispensation and the heralds of the new 
order. This chapter examines the nature of List’s prophecy and 
assesses its social significance and appeal, showing how his cyclical 
conception of time initially sponsored the idea of fluctuatory fortune, 
and how these sentiments were later modified by the idea of ultimate 
salvation and a linear conception of history. 

List’s cyclical vision of time was derived from his three sources of 
theological inspiration: the holy world of Nature, Norse mythology 
and modern theosophy. It has already been shown how the elementary 
content of Armanist doctrine focused up.on the ‘laws of nature’, which 
ostensibly determined the periodicity of all planetary and organic 
cycles in the cosmos. List frequently invoked these cosmic rhythms in 
his early pieces on national landscape: 2 that their sustaining laws 
assumed the status of a divine principle in his later writings testifies 
to his belief in cyclical time. Secondly, one must consider the import 
ofNorse myths in this respect. List’s references to the Fimbulwinter and 
the Gotterdammerung suggest that he was familiar with those pagan 
legends, according to which there came a mighty winter after which 
the whole earth was consumed by fire and flood before rising anew, 
‘fertile, green and fair as never before, cleansed of all its sufferings and 
evil’.' 1 According to these myths, the cycle of destruction and creation 
was repeated indefinitely. Lasdy, List’s adoption of theosophy with its 
cosmic rounds, and the individual’s successive reincarnation in each 
round, served to confirm his conviction in the recurrence of all things. 

Such cyclical notions of time may coexist with ideas of salvation and 
redemption, but these cannot enjoy any unique or final status. The 
termination of any given cycle heralds spiritual evolution and cosmic 
renovation, but the implacable logic of the cycle will still prevail: the 
organism will decline and perish recurrently into eternity. List 
rejected this oriental fatalism regarding time and destiny in favour of 
Judaeo-Christian notions of salvation. Although he had adopted 
theosophical materials for his cosmology, he was loath to accept its 
limited soteriology. His hopes for a restoration of the traditional world 
and a national revival led him to the materials of Western apocalyptic. 
Its explicit assumptions of linear time and a unique, final redemption 
jar continually with the cyclical implications of theosophy throughout 
his writings. In the light of List’s vilification of Christianity, this 



79 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

adoption is ironic. In due course List’s vision of a pan-German empire 
was almost wholly based on Western apocalyptic. 

Both Jewish and Christian apocalypses distinguish themselves 
from other forms of prophecy by asserting an absolute and qualitative 
difference between the present age and the future. This dualistic and 
linear time scheme is represented by the juxtaposition of a pessimistic 
view of the present with a fantastic and joyful image of the future. The 
present age is devalued by a depressing account of the hardships and 
misfortunes that have befallen the people. The apocalyptic writer 
often indicates that the world is subject to an increasing physical and 
moral degeneration: mundus iam senescit. These complaints can extend 
to the charge that the world is under the dominion of Satan or other 
evil powers. At a point in the narrative coincident with the time of the 
apocalypse’s composition, this historical survey gives way to prophecy 
proper. It is predicted that the former ills will be exacerbated by yet 
worse adversities. There will be signs of an ultimate catastrophe, such 
as violent climatic changes, drought, earthquakes and fire. Finally the 
evil spirit of this first age may appear as a dragon or other beast to 
torment mankind. The end of this age approaches as these so-called 
‘messianic woes’ become increasingly intolerable. A divine warrior- 
leader will suddenly intervene to liberate his chosen people from their 
affliction. This messiah will bind or destroy the evil tyrant before 
establishing his own divine and incorruptible kingdom on earth. 
These acts initiate a new second age, when the joyful elect of the 
redeemed will know no suffering nor want; this new world will not be 
subject to the ordinary laws of nature and physical limitation; 
happiness and good fortune will reign eternally . 4 

The essential features of Western apocalyptic prophecy can be 
discerned in these broad outlines. A first, woeful, even evil age 
proceeds to its climax, when a new age dawns wherein the former 
sufferers will be redeemed and exalted. Such prophecy possesses 
enormous appeal for those beset by severe adversity. Norman Cohn 
has shown how certain disoriented social groups in medieval Europe 
took these apocalypses quite literally . 5 Whenever particular hardships 
occurred, apocalyptic groups would discern the traditional signs of 
those final ‘messianic woes’. Tyrants were regularly identified with the 
monstrous beast of the last days, an incarnation of the Antichrist. The 
sufferers took comfort in expectation of a messianic redeemer, who 
would fulfil the prophecy by establishing the felicitous millennium in 
which they would participate as an elect. These hopes might lead the 
sufferers to conceive of themselves as a messianic vanguard and they 



80 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 

engaged in rebellious activiues against the Establishment in order to 
secure themselves a worthy place in the new world. The degree of such 
militancy would stand in a relationship to the supposed proximity of 
salvation. 6 

The survival of these ancient religious fantasies in the landscape of 
Western revolutionary imagination suggests that these myths satisfy a 
deep-seated demand for comfort and hope at times of oppression and 
strife. But poverty, pestilence, and war were all commonplace in 
medieval Europe and did not in themselves generate apocalyptic 
beliefs: a millenarian tradition had also to be present. Once a personal 
Lebenswelt has been upset by disaster it is easy to see apocalyptic as a 
fundamental and religious system of explanation. The putative source 
of the disaster is identified as an absolute evil power, the destruction of 
which is anticipated with hopes of the millenium. Absolute categories 
of good and evil, order and sin, restore cognitive harmony in the 
minds of the deprived and disoriented. Eschatological ideas have thus 
remained a perennial fantasy within the Judaeo-Christian orbit of 
religious influence. 

List echoed traditional apocalyptic by expressing extreme pessimism 
about many aspects of modern Austrian society. His concern was 
greatest with regard to the nationality question. The status of German 
language and culture in Austria had been increasingly challenged by 
the Slavs of the empire over the preceding decades. The process had 
been furthered by the Taafe government or ‘Iron Ring’, which had 
derived its support from a broad base of clerical, conservative, and 
Slavophile interests from 1879 until 1893. A triumph of Slav interests 
appeared to have been achieved in 1897 when Count Badeni 
introduced his language decrees, whereby all civil servants in Bohemia 
would have to speak both Czech and German, a qualification which 
would have clearly discriminated against the Germans. List fulminated 
against the clerical and socialist parties that favoured Slav interests 
and, drawing on the contemporary slogans of the Schonererite Pan- 
German and Los von Rom movements, he denounced the national 
outrage of Czech priests being appointed to German parishes in the 
ethnic borderlands and decried the preponderance of Slav civil 
servants in the bureaucracy. 7 

His critique of contemporary Austria also embraced wider social 
and economic issues. He bemoaned the current economic tendencies 
towards laissez-faire capitalism and large-scale enterprise, because they 
undermined the existence of artisans, craftsmen and small middle- 
class entrepreneurs. He complained that commerce had lost its 



81 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

former ethical code and regarded the decline of the guilds as the 
collapse of the ‘bastions of the burgher-world’. 8 List’s own concept of 
economic order was based nostalgically on those pre-capitalist modes 
of finance and production which were hard-pressed by modernization. 
He viewed the growth of modern banking and other financial 
institutions as the machinations of an immoral minority who speculated 
with paper tokens at the expense of honest men engaged in the 
production of tangible and proper goods. He condemned all finance 
as usury and indulged in period anti-Semitic sentiments culled from 
the newspapers of Georg von Schonerer and Aurelius Polzer. He 
finally recounted the story of the Vienna stock exchange crash of 
1873 as the inevitable outcome of modern business practice. 

List’s critique of the new economics actually typified the attitude of 
many Austrian contemporaries. Since only a fraction of industrialization 
could be ascribed to autochthonous entrepreneurs, with the State and 
foreign investors playing the major role, domestic investment generally 
came from the banks and credit institutions. For this reason capitalism 
was regarded as the preserve of a small, closed group. This attitude 
was reinforced after the 1873 crash, when the wider public had no 
further desire to speculate in equities. Pulzer has commented that, 
when the growth of capitalism was a process with which the majority of 
the population could not identify itself, feelings of pessimistic anger 
and pseudo-revolutionary conservatism were bound to assert them- 
selves. 9 List’s innovation consisted in channelling these sentiments 
into an expression of apocalyptic protest. 

List was no less pessimistic concerning modern political and 
cultural tendencies. A staunch defender of the monarchical principle 
and the Habsburg dynasty, he denounced all popular and democratic 
institutions of representation. Parliamentarianism was pure nonsense 
since it was based on the premiss that a majority of votes, however well 
or ill informed, should determine policy. 10 Contemporary cultural 
movements were condemned likewise: feminism testified to the 
worthlessness of the age; modern painting (the Seccessionists) rep- 
resented the rape of German art; theatre was dominated by foreign 
and Jewish patrons. These period cliches reflected the apocaplyptic 
notion that the world was subject to a process of physical and moral 
degeneration. 

Following the idiom of other contemporary volkisch writers, List 
regarded the rural peasantry as the physical guarantors of a healthy 
nation. As a result of urban migration in the late nineteenth century, 
this peasantry was decreasing. List visited abandoned and depopulated 



82 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 



farmsteads in Lower Austria, f orming a dismal opinion of their wider 
implications. The decline of the peasant estate was, in his view, 
symptomatic of national decrepitude. Moreover, while the rural 
population dwindled, the increasing urban population gave further 
cause for dismay. The population of Vienna had tripled between 1870 
and 1890 and urban services had clearly failed to keep pace. One-third 
of the city residents lived in dwellings of two rooms or less, and the city 
possessed one of the highest tuberculosis rates in Europe. 11 List 
observed that the majority of rural immigrants fell victim to these 
overcrowded conditions; wretched accommodation and poor food 
completed the debilitation of the nation’s youth. This physical decay 
of the nation was accompanied by moral degeneration. Like a 
medieval moralist enumerating the deadly sins, List compared 
modem urban culture to the perversions of the late Roman and 
Byzantine civilizations. 12 

It is evident that List’s description of contemporary Austria 
amounted to a fundamental devaluation of the present. The entire 
industrial-urban complex together with its emergent social and 
political institutions was utterly condemned. List followed the 
apocalyptic model even further by claiming that this situation was due 
to the dominion of evil powers. The dissolution of traditional social 
practices and institutions posited, in List’s view, a simpler and more 
conscious agent of change than the play of market forces, social 
circumstances, and structural changes of the economy. List sought a 
more concrete personification of these widespread socio-economic 
transformations in the monolithic conspiracy of the Great International 
Party. This imaginary body represented an anthropomorphic con- 
ception of social forces, whereby all historical change was explained 
by reference to agents with volition. Its origins could be detected in the 
Christian conspiracy against the old Ario-Germanic hierarchy. In the 
present the wiles of the Great International Party could be discerned in 
the financial institutions, the political parties and their neglect of 
German national interests, and in the advocates of emancipation, 
reform and international co-operation. The obvious paradox of a 
monolithic agency working behind the manifest pluralism of modern 
secular society should not obscure List’s debt to apocalyptic logic: the 
identification of a single nefarious power lent a religious and 
revolutionary appeal to his critique of Austrian society. The Great 
International Party was the satanic incarnation of the present age, 
intangible yet monstrous and malevolent. 13 

In the face of this oppression List began to search for the signs of 



83 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



national salvation in accordance with the traditional apocalyptic 
model. He devised several theories to prove that these signs were 
already evident by borrowing chronological notions from Hindu 
cosmology and Western astrology. By 1910 he had developed an 
interest in cosmic cycles following their theosophical popularization 
as rounds. These speculations concerning the regular creation and 
destruction of all organisms within the cosmos enabled List to invoke 
apocalyptic hopes by positing the end of a cycle close in time to his 
own day: the start of another cycle corresponded to the advent of a new 
age. List indulged in abstruse calculations based on Blavatsky’s figures 
concerning the cycles, in order to conclude that a significant cycle had 
terminated in 1897. 14 A further quarry of apocalyptic calculation was 
found in the materials of the contemporary German astrological 
revival amongst theosophists. Blavatsky had already referred to the 
solar or sidereal year, which was the time taken by the planets to take 
up their original alignment in the next house of the zodiac. She 
defined this period as c.25,868 terrestrial years. List quoted this very 
figure and thus derived the sidereal season, which lasted c.6,467 
terrestrial years. Since seasonal changes played a central role in his 
pantheistic mythology, his application of the sidereal concept to 
apocalyptic was logical. In a series of articles published during the war, 
List claimed that the ‘cosmic-fluid influences of the sidereal seasons’ 
exercised a powerful force upon human affairs. 15 An ‘armanisto- 
cabbalistic’ calculation convinced him that the winter solstice of 1899 
had simultaneously been the winter solstice of the current sidereal 
year. The tribulations of the modern age and the suffering unleashed 
by the First World War were regarded as manifestations of those 
cosmic equinoctial gales before the onset of the sidereal spring. This 
season represented an absolutely and qualitatively distinct period in 
the history of mankind. Within this astrological framework of specu- 
lation, the ‘messianic woes’ appeared as the cosmically determined 
heralds of redemption. 16 

Another sign, which gave List cause for messianic optimism, was his 
receipt of a letter in November 1911 from an individual calling 
himself Tarnhari. This man, whose name literally meant ‘the hidden 
lord’, claimed to be descended from the ancient tribe of the 
Wolsungen. This mysterious emissary from the distant past assured 
List that his rediscoveries concerning the Ario-Germanic past tallied 
with his own ancestral-clairvoyant memories. Tarnhari also confirmed 
the existence of th e Armanenschaft: he claimed that he had been earlier 
reincarnated as a leading priest-king of the old elite. 17 Although 



84 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 



Tarnhari primarily vindicated the past pole of his fantasy, List 
regarded the appearance of this reincarnated chieftain as a good omen 
of imminent national redemption on the future pole. 18 A further 
indication of the messianic hopes attaching to Tarnhari may be 
deduced from a letter from Friedrich Wannieck to List, written in the 
early months of the war. The old patron suggested that Tarnhari 
should reveal himself openly, now that Germany stood in an hour of 
need. 19 

These various signs indicated the imminent destruction of the 
satanic antagonist. List demanded the annihilation of the Great 
International Party in order that the Ario-Germans could enter the 
promised land of happiness and prosperity. 20 In 1911 he voiced a 
prophecy of millenarian combat, which strangely anticipated the 
naval and military hostilities of the First World War: 

Ja, noch einmal sollen die Funken am den ario-germanisch-deutschen-osterreich- 
ichischen Schlachtschiffen stieben, noch einmal sollen Donars Schlachtenblitze aus 
den Kolos salkanonen unserer Dreadnoughts zischelnd zungeln, noch einmal sollen 
unsere Volkerheere . . . nach Siiden und Westen . . . wettem, um [den Feind] zu 
schlagen . . . damit Ordnung geschaffen werde . 21 

[Yes, the Ario- German- Austrian battleships shall once more send 
sparks flying, Dorxar’s lightning shall once more shoot sizzlingfrom the 
giant guns of our dreadnoughts, our national armies shall once more 
storm southwards and westwards to smash the enemy and create 
order.] 

These batdes are consistent with the apocalyptic model. An enormous 
revolt, redolent of the twilight of the gods or the barbarian migrations, 
will smash the infernal enemy to create a righteous and pan-German 
order. 

This prognostication of a German war of aggression against the 
non-German world was rooted in List’s desire for apocalyptic vengeance. 
He recognized that an international war could satisfy his demand for a 
more visible, tangible, and anti-German enemy than the imaginary 
Great International Party. This translation of millenarian struggle into 
a war of nations also spared List the hopeless and undesirable revolt 
against the domestic establishment, the traditional features of which 
he was anxious to conserve. This conjunction of chiliastic bellicosity 
and a disinclination towards authentic social revolution is corroborated 
by the predilection for national wars on the part of many conservative 
revolutionaries and fascists in Europe. 22 

The outbreak of the First World War was greeted with jubilation in 
all belligerent countries. Some historians have suggested that this 

85 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



popular response evidenced a widespread desire for novelty after 
several seemingly stagnant decades. Others have noted a burgeoning 
imperialism coupled with the wish for distraction from pressing social 
reforms. In Germany there flourished the ‘Ideas of 1914’, an 
intellectual formulation of the general feeling of relief that national 
unity had overcome social division in the face of a foreign enemy. The 
pre-war cultural pessimists identified the former national ills with the 
insidious influence of the western democracies, which were now to be 
vanquished by the sword. It is against this euphoric reaction that List’s 
apocalyptic attitude to the war must be understood. 23 

In April 1915 List convened a meeting of the HAO in Vienna. He 
delivered an Easter oration in which he welcomed the war as the onset 
of a millenarian struggle that would usher in the new age. He warned 
that this age of transition would initially witness a sharpening of 
adversity, ‘frightful outrages and maddening torments’. But these 
trials would eventually separate the good from the bad for all time, 
since all true Germans ‘were preparing a new age, in which nothing 
pertaining to the old age could survive unless it was Armanist in 
nature’. 24 The war played an important role in List’s millenarian 
fantasy. International hostilities represented the ‘messianic woes’ with 
their increasingly intolerable misfortunes and also acted as a divine 
court of judgement which would divide the people into the eschato- 
logical camps of the saved and the damned. He closed his oration with 
an expression of temporal dualism perfectly consistent with traditional 
Western apocalyptic. 

The attitudes of his cult followers towards the war corresponded 
closely to his own. Tarnhari spoke of the war as a ‘holy august 
emergency’, while Ellegaard Ellerbek dated his letters according to the 
day of ‘the holiest war’. List adopted a similar chronology by 
completing his apocalyptic piece entitled ‘Es wirdeinmal . . . !’ with the 
date ‘Vienna, on the thousandth day of the Holiest War, 22 April 
1917’, and celebrating the day by having a studio-photograph taken of 
himself working in his study. Numerous other pieces of correspondence 
from List’s circle repeat this view of the war as a sacred crusade against 
the demonic hosts; its harsh trials, whether encountered in the 
trenches or the hungry cities, were to be borne joyfully on account of 
their apocalyptic significance. 25 

This positive attitude towards suffering prompts its comparison 
with a phenomenon that Michael Barkun has defined as the ‘disaster 
utopia’. Barkun observes the ambiguity of disaster which, while 
obviously subjecting people to deprivation, can also produce unusual 



86 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 

feelings of well-being. He notes that disasters often induce a temporary 
sense of common purpose and that ‘invidious social distinctions 
disappear in a suddenly opened and democratized atmosphere’. 26 
This evaluation accords well with the euphoria implicit in the ‘Ideas of 
1914’, and also illuminates List’s enthusiasm for the actual hardships 
of war. Because a belief in the millennium often assumes the 
occurrence of disasters that precede the epiphany, the sense of 
fellowship in the midst of actual disasters can appear to confirm the 
millenarian expectations. For List, suffering augured salvation. 27 

How did List actually envisage this collective salvation? For his 
descriptions of the millennium he tended to make use of mythological 
materials drawn from medieval German apocalyptic, Norse legends, 
and modern theosophy in order to convey its fantastic nature. He 
related the medieval tale of Emperor Frederick Barbarossa who lay 
sleeping inside the Kyffhauser mountain. Once he awakened, Barbarossa 
would unleash a wave of Teutonic fury across the world prior to the 
establishment of German hegemony. This tale owed its inspiration to 
a complex of medieval millenarian hopes which had originally 
crystallized around the Hohenstauffen emperors in the thirteenth 
century. Owing to a variety of historical and cultural circumstances, 
these hopes later lit upon the Habsburg emperors Frederick IV and 
Maximilian I in the fifteenth century. One millenarian tract of the 
period entitled Gamaleon had told of a future German emperor who 
was to overthrow the French monarchy and the Papacy. The Church 
of Rome would be expropriated and all its clergy exterminated. Once 
their oppressors had been vanquished, the Germans would be exalted 
over all other peoples. In place of the Pope a new German patriarch at 
Mainz would preside over a new Church subordinate to the emperor, 
a new Frederick, whose dominion would embrace the entire earth. 28 

List’s own vision of the Armanist millennium owed much to this 
mixture of crude early nationalism with the tradition of popular 
eschatology. As in those early modern manifestoes one finds the same 
belief in a primitive German world in which the divine will was once 
realized and which had been the source of all good until it was 
undermined by a conspiracy of inferior, non-Germanic peoples, the 
Church, the capitalists, the Jews, the liberals, or whatever. This ideal 
world would be restored by a new aristocracy under a God-sent 
saviour who would fulfil the religious and political expectations of the 
oppressed. List drew upon the traditions of this obscure historical 
chiliasm by claiming that the reigns of Frederick IV and Maximilian I 
betokened a renaissance of the Armanist spirit, the thrust of which had 



87 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

been sadly aborted by the conspiratorial Lutheran Reformation. 29 It is 
further significant that List was attracted to the ideas of Giordano 
Bruno, the sixteenth-century philosopher and heretic. Bruno had 
proclaimed that Judaism and Christianity had corrupted the ancient 
and true religion, by which he meant the mysticism and the magic of 
the Egyptian Hermetica, which had enjoyed considerable popularity 
amongst the Neoplatonists of the Renaissance. Bruno also wanted a 
new dispensation based on the rediscovered ancient gnosis. This 
conjunction of millenarian hopes and cabbalistic thought also 
appeared in List’s vision of the new Germany. With great approval he 
quoted Bruno: ‘O Jove, let the Germans realise their own strength . . . 
and they will not be men, but gods’. 30 

A particular Norse legend offered another vision of the millenium 
which is important for this analysis. As early as 1891, List had 
discovered a verse of the ‘Voluspa’ which invoked an awesome and 
benevolent messianic figure: 

Denn es kommt ein Reicher zum Ringe der Rater, 

Ein Starke von Oben beendet den Streit, 

Mit schlichtenden Schlussen entscheidet er alles, 

Bleiben soli ewig, was er gebeut [gebot]. 3 ' 

[A wealthy man joins the circle of counsellors, 

A Strong One from Above ends the faction, 

He setdes everything with fair decisions, 

Whatever he ordains shall endure for ever.] 

This Starke von Oben (Strong One from Above) became a stock phrase in 
all List’s subsequent references to the millennium. An ostensibly 
superhuman individual would end all human factions and confusion 
with the establishment of an eternal order. This divine dictator 
possessed particular appeal for those who lamented the uncertain 
nature of industrial society. List eagerly anticipated the advent of this 
leader, whose monolithic world of certainties would fulfil the socio- 
political conditions of his national millennium. 

Lastly, theosophy offered an occult vision of the millennium. 
Towards the end of the war, List suggested that the Austrian and 
German victims of the slaughter on the batde-fronts would be 
reincarnated as a collective messianic body. He applied the principle 
of karma to claim that the hundred thousands of war-dead would be 
reborn with innate millenarian fervour: these young men would then 
form the elite messianic corps in a later post-war national revolution. 
From his calculations based on ‘cosmic and astrological laws’, List 



88 




THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 



deduced that the years 1914, 1923 and 1932 had an intimate relation 
with the coming Armanist millennium. He favoured the year 1 932 as 
the time when a divine force would possess the collective unconscious- 
ness of the German people. This generation of resurrected revolution- 
aries would become sensitive to the divine force and constitute a 
fanatic league which would usher in the new age. Order, national 
revenge, and fervour would then transform modern pluralist society 
into a monolithic, eternal, and incorruptible state. 32 This totalitarian 
vision was List’s blueprint for the future Greater Germanic Reich. In 
his anticipation of Nazi Germany, his calculation was only one year out. 



89 




8 



Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels 
and Theozoology 



Reference has already been made to List’s younger contemporary, 
Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels, who was among the old guru’s earliest 
patrons, having made his first acquaintance, together with the 
Wanniecks, at Gars am Kamp in 1893. Lanz also celebrated a lost 
proto- Aryan world, but his theories did not possess thevolkisch aura of 
List’s Armanism with its eulogy of ancient Teutons and their customs. 
His thought is based instead on radical theology, an idiosyncratic view 
of history and abstruse scientific speculation. Lanz causes one to 
glimpse a strange prehistoric world of god-like Aryan supermen, a 
medieval Europe dominated by patrician religious and military 
orders, and a visionary New Age peopled with racist knights, mystics, 
and sages. At the heart of his ‘ario-christian’ doctrine lies a dualistic 
heresy which describes the battling forces of Good and Evil, typified 
by the Aryan ace-men and their saviour Frauja, a Gothic name for 
Jesus, who calls for the sacrificial extermination of the sub-men, the 
‘apelings’ and all other racial inferiors. Lanz drew his terminology 
from a variety of contemporary disciplines in the humanities and the 
natural sciences, including anthropology, physics, and zoology, but 
the functional similarity of his mythology' with the relatively simple 
volkisch notions of List with respect to their common political concerns 
and purpose should not be overlooked. Lanz has already been the 
subject of two analytical studies and he has now assumed his place as 
one of Hitler’s pre-war mentors at Vienna in standard biographies of 
the Fiihrer. 1 

The man who styled himself Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels- and 
furthermore claimed to have been born on 1 Mav 1872 at Messina, the 
son of Baron Johann Lancz de Liebenfels and his wife Katharina, nee 
Skala, was actually born on 19 July 1874 in Vienna- Penzing, the son of 
Johann Lanz, a schoolmaster, and his wife Katharina, nee Hoffenreich. 



90 




JORG LANZ VON UEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

He was christened simply Adolf Josef. Contrary to his adult fantasy of 
aristocratic and Sicilian origins, he was brought up by middle-class 
parents who were decended on the paternal side from a long line of 
Viennese burghers dating from the early eighteenth century. 2 During 
his childhood he acquired a romantic interest in the medieval past and 
its religious orders, which he revered as the spiritual elite of a remote 
age. By his own and often unreliable account, he developed an 
enthusiasm for the military order of the Templar Knights and steeped 
himself in fanciful lore concerning their castles and. legends. 3 These 
sentiments may have motivated his decision to enter the Cistercian 
novitiate at Heiligenkreuz Abbey near Vienna. Despite opposition 
from his family, he was inducted into the order as Brother Georg on 3 1 
July 1893 ( aet . 19). 

Heiligenkreuz Abbey was a formative influence in Lanz’s life. The 
plain white stone and austere flags of the magnificent Romanesque 
church nave, the vaulted cloister garth, the richly illuminated stained 
glass and the graves of the twelfth-century Babenberg dukes were 
deeply imbued with an atmosphere of medieval and chivalrous 
romance. Lanz was an enthusiastic novice and made good progress, 
taking the solemn vows on 12 September 1897 and assuming teaching 
duties in the seminary from 19 September 1898. 4 While monastic life 
fulfilled his sentimental desire for identification with the old holy 
elites, these years at Heiligenkreuz also gave him an exceptional 
opportunity to extend his education under the learned tutelage of his 
novice-master, Nivard Schlogl, who professed the Old Testament and 
oriental languages. Lanz’s later writings bear the stamp of a thorough 
grounding in Bible knowledge, the exegesis of rare apocryphal and 
gnostic texts, and the religious traditions and languages of the Near 
East. He was also an assiduous student of the Abbey’s history and 
published his studies in several learned journals. 5 

The very first of his published works is important since it reveals the 
earliest indication of his incipient heresy and sectarian Weltanschauung. 
The relevant piece was a commentary upon a tombstone relief 
excavated from the cloister flagstones in May 1894. This relief 
portrayed a nobleman, mistakenly identified as Berthold von Treun 
(d. 1254), treading upon an unidentifiable beast. Lanz interpreted this 
scene as an allegorical depiction of the eternal struggle between the 
forces of good and evil, represented here by the nobleman and the 
strange animal. 6 Lanz was particularly intrigued by this bestial 
representation of the evil principle. His reflections upon the literal 
implications of this allegory convinced him that the root of all evil in 



91 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

the world actually had a sub-human animal nature. He began to study 
zoology in order to find a solution to this problem. Taking the 
Scriptures, apocrypha, modern archaeological discoveries, and 
anthropology as his further sources, Lanz assimilated current racist 
ideas into a dualistic religion. He finally identified the blue-eyed, 
blond-haired Aryan race, as defined by such contemporary Social 
Darwinist writers as Carl Penka, Ludwig Woltmann, and Ludwig 
Wilser, as the good principle, and the various dark races of negroes, 
mongols and ‘mediterraneanoids’ as the evil principle. Lanz’s distinc- 
tive contribution to racist ideology was this translation of scientific 
ideas and prejudice into a gnostic doctrine, which typified the blond 
and dark races as cosmic entities working respectively for order and 
chaos in the universe. 

It is difficult to know how far these ideas had developed during 
Lanz’s novitiate. His teacher Schlogl disdained the Jews of the Old 
Testament as an arrogant and exclusive religious group, while his 
Bible translations were placed on the Index of forbidden books by the 
Church because of his anti-Semitic prejudice. Lanz may well have 
begun thinking along racist lines under Schlogl’s influence. However, 
it is likely that these burgeoning unorthodox notions would have also 
caused considerable friction between himself and his superiors. After 
a period of tension and unhappiness arising from his desire for 
physical and intellectual freedom, Lanz renounced his holy vows and 
left Heiligenkreuz on 27 April 1899 (aet. 24). 7 His departure was 
viewed in a different light by the Abbey authorities. The register refers 
to his ‘surrender to the lies of the world and carnal love’. 8 Lanz, 
however, defiandy justified his apostasy with the assertion that the 
Cistercian order had betrayed its original (i.e. racist) doctrines and that 
he could engage in its reform better from outside. His three anti- 
clerical books, published shortly after leaving the Abbey, testify to this 
attitude. 9 Other evidence suggests that he joined Schonerer’s Pan- 
German movement and converted to Protestantism. 10 He is also 
supposed to have married upon leaving the order. Such an action 
would have compelled the renunciation of his vows and might explain 
the otherwise enigmatic reference to ‘carnal love’. 11 

Henceforth Lanz was free to develop his own religious ideas. The 
years from 1 900 to 1 905 witness an extraordinary dynamism in Lanz’s 
intellectual development and enterprise. He enrolled as a member of 
at least two learned societies where he had an opportunity to meet 
eminent historians and scientists. He took out three patents on 
inventions including a technical apparatus and a motor. 12 He also 



92 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

commenced writing for such volkisch and Social Darwinist periodicals 
as Theodor Fritsch’s Hammer (est. January 1902) and Ludwig Wolt- 
mann’s Politisch-Anthropologische Revue (est. April 1902). One of Lanz’s 
articles contained more than a hundred references to scholarly texts 
and articles, thereby confirming the depth of his recent studies in 
anthropology, palaeontology and mythology. This piece records 
Lanz’s first publication along scientific lines. Since Lanz was using a 
doctoral title by 1 902, he may have written a dissertation on a topic in 
this prehistoric field. 13 

In 1903 Lanz published a long article in a periodical for biblical 
research. Entided ‘Anthropozoon biblicum’, this learned investigation 
of the past extended his earlier theological and scientific hypotheses. 
He began by analysing the mystery cults described by the ancient 
authors Herodotus, Euhemarus, Plutarch, Strabo, and Pliny. He 
concluded that the antique civilizations had strictly maintained a 
secret associated with the sexual domain, since its mention always 
occurred within the context of orgiastic rituals. He was also convinced 
that the principal locale of such cults had lain in the Near East. 14 
Turning from these conclusions, Lanz pursued his enquiries in the 
light of recent archaeological discoveries in Assyria. Two particular 
reliefs with cuneiform inscriptions provided the key to the riddle of 
these cults: the relief of Ashurnasirpal II (883-859 BC) and the black 
obelisk of Shalmaneser III (858-824 BC). Both these artefacts had been 
discovered and excavated at Nimrud in 1 848 by the British orientalist 
Sir Austen Henry Layard. 15 

Both reliefs depicted Assyrians leading strange beasts of several 
species in the manner of pets. The accompanying cuneiform inscription 
on the former related that the King of Musri (a territory lying to the 
east of the Gulf of Aquaba) had sent these small beasts (pagatu ) as 
tribute to Ashurnasirpal II. Similar animals were also reportedly 
received from the kings of the Patineans and the Egyptians. The text 
continued that Ashurnasirpal had bred these animals in his zoological 
garden at Cal ah. The inscription on the latter alluded to two other 
species of beasts (baziati and udumi), which had also arrived as tribute 
from Musri. 16 A welter of philological fallacies and circumstantial 
evidence taken from current anthropology and ethnology enabled 
Lanz to set up a series of hypotheses regarding the subject of the 
reliefs. 17 

He suggested that the pagatu and baziati were really the pygmies of 
recent scientific research and discovery; most importantly, he claimed 
that the Aryan race had committed bestiality with this lower species, 



93 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

which derived from an earlier and quite distinct branch of animal 
evolution. 18 The writings of the ancients, the findings of modern 
archaeology and anthropology, and substantial sections of the Old 
Testament were supposed to corroborate this terrible practice of 
miscegenation. The remaining sections of the article were devoted to a 
meticulous exegesis of the Books of Moses, Job, Enoch, and the 
Prophets in support of this hypothesis. The article thus completed the 
initial phase in the development of Lanz’s neo-gnostic religion. He 
had identified the source of all evil in the world and discovered the 
authentic meaning of the Scriptures. According to his theology the 
Fall simply denoted the racial compromise of the Aryans due to 
wicked interbreeding with lower animal species. The consequence of 
these persistent sins, later institutionalized as satanic cults, was the 
creation of several mixed races, which threatened the proper and 
sacred authority of the Aryans throughout the world, especially in 
Germany where this race was most numerous. With this definition of 
sin, the sexo-racist gnosis offered an explanation for the wretched 
human condition that Lanz subjectively perceived in modern Central 
Europe. 

Within a year Lanz published his fundamental statement of 
doctri nc. I ts very title, Theozoologie oder die Kunde von den Sodorns-Aff ingen 
mid dem Goiter- Elektron [Theo-Zoology or the Lore of the Sodom-Apelings and 
the Electron of the Gods] (1905), distils the gnostic essence of Lanz’s 
thought. It was a strange amalgam of religious beliefs drawn from 
traditional Judaeo-Christian sources, yet modified in the light of new 
life-sciences: hence theo- zoology. The book repeated the basic 
hypotheses of the earlier article within an expanded scheme of biblical 
interpretation spanning both Testaments. The first section sought to 
understand the origin and nature of the pygmies. Four chapters 
entided Gaia (earth), Pege (water), Pyr (fire) and Aither (air) described 
the satanic realm by relating the story of the first pygmy, called Adam, 
who spawned a race of beast- men ( Anthropozoa ). 19 Lanz employed a 
cryptic scheme of translation, whereby the words ‘earth’, ‘stone’, 
‘wood’, ‘bread’, ‘gold’, ‘water’, ‘fire’ and ‘air’ all connoted ‘beast-man’, 
while the verbs ‘to name’, ‘to see’, ‘to know’ and ‘to cover’ meant ‘to 
copulate with’ and so on, in order to create a monomaniacal view of 
the ancient world. 20 According to Lanz, the chief pursuit of antiquity 
appeared to have been the rearing of love-pygmies ( Buhliwerge ) for 
deviant sexual pleasure. 21 The prime purpose of the Old Testament 
had been to warn the chosen people (the Aryans!) against the 
consequences of this bestial idolatory. 



94 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

Lanz’s discussion of the divine principle involved the adoption of 
more modern scientific materials. It has already been shown how 
swiftly Lanz appropriated the findings of contemporary archaeology 
and anthropology for his doctrine: he was no less sensitive to the 
recent discoveries in the fields of electronics and radiology'. The 
earliest of such discoveries to inspire Lariz concerned the thermionic 
emission of electrons from hot bodies as observed by Blondlot and 
called N-rays in 1887. Within a few years Wilhelm Rontgen had 
discovered X-rays, for which he was awarded the Nobel prize in 1901. 
In addition to these forms of electromagnetic radiation came the 
discovery of radioactivity by the Curies in 1898. They subsequently 
succeeded in isolating the source elements polonium and radium in 
1 902 and duly received the Nobel prize. These exciting discoveries of 
radiation captured popular imagination, an influence that was given 
further force by the application of radio communication between 
1898 and 1904, following the work of Marconi and Hertz. 

Lanz appreciated the popular appeal of these futuristic forms of 
energy and exploited such notions for his descriptions of the gods. 22 
He began by asserting that the gods were but earlier and superior 
forms of life (Theozoa), quite distinct from Adam’s spawn of Anthropozoa. 
Following the hint of Wilhelm Bolsche (1861-1939), a popular 
zoological writer who may have owed his inspiration on this point to 
theosophy, Lanz claimed that these early beings had possessed 
extraordinary sensory organs for the reception and transmission of 
electrical signals. These organs bestowed the powers of telepathy and 
omniscience upon their owners but had atrophied into the supposedly 
superfluous pituitary and pineal glands in modern man owing to the 
miscegenation of the god-men with the beast-men. However, Lanz 
claimed that a universal programme of segregation could restore 
these powers to the Aryans as the closest descendants of the god- 
men. 23 

The next four chapters, entitled Pater, Pneuma, Hyios, and 
Ekklesia, followed the account of the New Testament; attention was 
focused on the coming of Christ and his revival of the sexo-racist 
gnosis in order to redeem his chosen people, namely the Aryan race. 
Christ’s miracles, his magical powers and the transfiguration all 
served to confirm his electronic nature. Lanz substantiated this 
hypothesis with quotations from the apocryphal Acts of John, the 
Oxyrhynchus Sayings and the Gnostic apocrypha known as the Pistis 
Sophia, which was the subject of contemporary German scholarship. 24 
Lanz finally interpreted the Passion as the attempted rape and 



95 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

perversion of Christ by pygmies urged on by the disciples of the 
Satanic bestial cults devoted to interbreeding . 25 

These frequently obscene and always radical interpretations of the 
Scriptures logically embraced the familiar Judaeo-Christian notions 
of linear history and an apocalypse. In place of the formerly distinct 
divine and demonic species, there had developed several mixed races 
of which the Aryans were the least corrupt. However, throughout all 
recorded history the inferior races had sought to tyrannize the Aryans 
by dragging them down the evolutionary ladder by means of their 
promiscuity. The history of religion described the struggle between 
the bestial and endogamous cults. At the end of this neo-manichaean 
temporal scheme stood the promise of final redemption and the 
Second Coming. Lanz’s concept of the millennium was clearly 
generated by an overwhelming sense of cultural pessimism. He 
regarded the modern world as the domain of utter evil: 

Die Zeit is gekommenl Verkommen und verelendet ist die alte Sodomsbrut in 
Vorderasien und urn's game Mittelmeer herum . . . Unsere Leiber sind vergrindet 
trotz aller Seifen, verudumt, verpagutet und verbaziatet. Nie war das Leben der 
Menschen trotz aller technischen Errungenschaften so armselig wie heute. 
Teuflische Menschenbestien driicken von oben, schlachten gewissenlos Millionen 
Menschen in morderischen Kriegen, die zur Bereicherung ihres personlichen 
Geldbeutels gefuhrt werden. Wilde Menschenbestien rutteln von unten her an den 
festen Sdulen der Kultur . . . Was wollt ihr da noch eine Hblle im Jenseits! Ist die, in 
der wir leben, und die in uns brennt, nicht schauerlich genug ? 26 
[The time has come! The old brood of Sodom is degenerate and 
wretched in the Middle East and all round the Mediterranean . . . Our 
bodies are scurfy despite all soaps, they are udumized, pagatized and 
baziatized [verbs of corruption formed from the Assyrian names for the 
pygmies]. The life of man has never been so miserable as today in spite 
of all technical achievements. Demonic beast-men oppress us from 
above, slaughtering without conscience millions of people in murderous 
wars waged for their own personal gain. Wild beast-men shake the 
pillars of culture from below . . . Why do you seek a hell in the next 
world! Is not the hell in which we live and which burns inside us [i.e. the 
stigma of corrupt blood] sufficiently dreadful?] 

These ‘messianic woes’ corresponded to Lanz’s subjective perception 
of widespread socio-cultural disorder in Europe. These woes heralded 
the approach of the millennium in the form of a sexo-racist religious 
revival among the Aryans. The time had indeed come. The ascendancy 
of the inferior races both in Europe and in its colonial orbit had to be 
reversed. At this point Lanz betrayed the illiberal, pan-German and 



96 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

monarchical sentiments underlying his entire theozoological doctrine. 
The lower classes of society were confused with the inferior races’ 
progeny and charged with the frustration of German greatness and 
world dominion; they would have to be exterminated in accordance 
with the logic of traditional Western apocalyptic. Lanz fulminated 
against the false Christian tradition of compassion for the weak and 
inferior and demanded that the nation deal ruthlessly with the 
underprivileged. Socialism, democracy and feminism were the most 
important targets for this merciless mission on account of their 
emancipatory force . 27 Women in particular were regarded as a special 
problem, since they were supposedly more prone to bestial lust than 
men. Only their strict subjection to Aryan husbands could guarantee 
the success of racial purification and the deification of the Aryan race. 
The process would be accelerated by the humane extermination of the 
inferior races through an enforced programme of sterilization and 
castration . 28 

The similarity between Lanz’s proposals and the later practices of 
Himmler’s SS Lebensbom maternity organization, and the Nazi plans 
for the disposal of the Jews and the treatment of the enslaved Slav 
populations in the East, indicate the survival of these mental reflexes 
over a generation. Lanz’s advocacy of brood-mothers in eugenic 
convents (. Zuchtkloster ), served by pure-blooded Aryan stud-males 
(. Ehehelfer ), was revived in the Third Reich with Himmler’s anticipation 
of polygamy for his SS, the preferential care of unmarried mothers in 
SS maternity homes, and his musings on the education and marriage 
of Chosen Women ( Hohe Frauen). Lanz’s specific recommendations 
for the disposal of the racial inferiors were various and included: 
deportation to Madagascar; enslavement; incineration as a sacrifice to 
God; and use as beasts of burden. Both the psychopathology of the 
Nazi holocaust and the subjugation of non-Aryans in the East were 
presaged by Lanz’s grim speculations . 29 

The millennium revealed itself as a fabulous German landscape, at 
once futuristic and aristocratic. Lanz claimed that traces of the holy 
electronic power still prevailed in the old princely dynasties of 
Germany. Provided that their pedigree had remained thoroughly 
noble, these families were the closest living descendants of the former 
god-men. Lanz emphasized that these princes had always cultivated 
genius, innovation and art at their castles and courts, thus providing 
the sole historical instrument of progress. In contrast there stood the 
spiritual deadweight of the inferior castes, which constantly sought to 
jeopardize this progress with their sentimental and vulgar demands 



97 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

for a share in power, regardless of their racial and gnostic incapacity. 
In the sphere of foreign affairs Lanz urged every right-thinking Aryan- 
German to recognize this truth abroad and take legitimate possession 
of their global birthright. Germany could no longer allow ‘the apish 
louts to fleece the world’, since the entire planet was her natural colony 
with a farm for every bold soldier and, in accordance with the 
hierarchical principle of racial purity, a country estate for every 
officer . 30 

An apocalyptic battle would be released upon the corrupt and 
resistant world, in order to attain this racist millennium. Lanz’s words 
anticipated List’s own prophecy of the First World War: ‘ Unter dem 
Jubel der befreiten Gottmenschen wiirden wir den ganzen Erdball erobem . . . es 
soil geschiirt werden, bis die Funken aus den Schloten deutscher Schlachtschiffe 
stieben, und die Feuerstrahlen aus deutschen Geschiitzen zucken . . . und Ordnung 
gemacht unter der zankischen Udumubande [wird]’ 3 ' [‘Amid thejubilationof 
the liberated god-men we would conquer the whole planet . . . the fire 
should be raked until sparks fly from the barrels of German 
battleships and flashes start from German cannon . . . and order 
created among the quarrelsome Udumu-band’]. This envisaged 
order was a pan-German racist and hierarchical paradise, which 
included gnostic hierophants, a new caste of warriors and a world 
revolution to establish eternal German hegemony: 

Aber es soli nicht mehr lange dauem, da wird im Lande des Elektrons und des 
heiligen Graals ein neues Priestergeschlecht entstehen . . . Grosse Fiirsten, starke 
Krieger, gottbegeisterte Priester, Sanger mit beredter Zunge, Weltweise mit hellen 
Augen werden aus Deulschlands urheiliger Gottererde erstehen, den Sodomsdfjlingen 
wieder die Ketten anlegen, die Kirche des heiligen Geistes . . . aufrichten und die 
Erde zu einer ‘Inset der Gliickseligen’ machen . 32 

[But it will not last much longer, for a new priesthood will arise in the 
land of the electron and the holy grail . . . Great princes, doughty 
warriors, inspired priests, eloquent bards and visionary sages will arise 
from the ancient holy soil of Germany and enchain the apes of Sodom, 
establish the Church of the Holy Spirit and transform the earth into the 
‘Isles of the Blessed’.] 

This apocalypse fused several German intellectual traditions into a 
millenarian vision of the new fatherland. The bards and sages of early 
Romanticism marched with the princes and soldiers of pre-industrial 
conservatism into a religious paradise, defined by such neo-gnostic 
symbols as the Holy Grail, the electron and the Church of the Holy 
Spirit. Its attainment was conditional upon the total subjugation of the 



98 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

inferiors. Theozoologie thus represented an extraordinary compilation 
of theological and scientific ideas in support of the restoration of 
aristocratic authority in a pan-German realm. 

In spring 1905 Lanz co-operated with several distinguished theo- 
logians in the production of a scholarly edition of early Jewish texts. 
This publication was undertaken by an editorial panel representing 
the viewpoints of Judaism, Catholicism and Protestantism: Moritz 
Altschuler, the rabbinical scholar who was a member of the List 
Society and edited the Vierteljahrsschrift fur Bibelkunde; Wilhelm A. 
Neumann, a professor of theology and a canon of Heiligenkreuz 
Abbey; and August Wiinsche, a professor of oriental studies. The 
publisher’s announcement of the forthcoming series entided 
Monumenta Judaica reveals the ambitious nature of their endeavour. 
The first part, ‘Bibliotheca Targuminica’, proposed to edit the earliest 
Aramaic sources for the Pentateuch; subsequent sections were planned 
for editions of its Samarian, Syriac, Gothic and Arabic recensions. The 
second part, ‘Bibliotheca Talmudica’, was intended to study the 
influence of Babylonian and Assyrian ideas upon the Jewish religious 
tradition. 33 Lanz’s selection as the Catholic editor instead of Neumann, 
and his use of the tides ‘Dr. phil. et theol., prof, et presb. ord. Cist.’, 
suggests a certain standing among theologians and a reconciliation 
with the establishment at Heiligenkreuz. 34 He was invited to contribute 
because of his knowledge of the Septuagint and Vulgate texts and the 
Gothic Bible of Wulfila. The series did not fully materialize and only 
five volumes had appeared under the title Orbis antiquitatum by 1908. 
Lanz was responsible for an edition of the Book of Genesis from both 
the Septuagint and Vulgate texts. 

Journalism soon lured Lanz away from further theological scholar- 
ship while his increasing association with volkisch and anti-Semitic 
parties after 1905 precluded this kind of collaboration in Judaic 
research. His contributions to Fritsch’s Hammer (a pioneer anti- 
Semitic periodical) and the establishment of his own organ Ostara in 
late 1905 were perhaps as much a cause of the termination of the 
Monumenta Judaica as the over-ambitiousness of the project. The Ostara 
(named after the pagan goddess of spring) was commenced as a 
periodical addressed to political and economic problems in the 
Habsburg empire from an illiberal and Pan-German point of view. 
Each issue w 7 as written exclusively by a single author. These included 
‘sc’, Adolf Harpf, Ludwig von Bernuth, AdolfWahrmund, and Harald 
Graved van Jostenoode besides Lanz during the issue of the first 
twenty-five numbers untiljuly 1908. Some of these contributors are 



99 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

familiar as supporters of the List Society (est. March 1908). The 
periodical manifesto informed its readers that the Ostara was the first 
and only ‘racial-economic’ magazine, which intended to apply 
anthropological findings practically, in order to combat scientifically 
the revolt of the inferiors and to protect the noble European race. The 
publication of ‘theozoological’ ideas amongst a broad readership 
required that the magazine discuss racism in relation to all aspects of 
social life, including science, politics, technology, art and literature. 35 
Fromjuly 1908 until the end ofthe First World War, Lanz managed to 
write no less than seventy-one issues himself. Their stock themes were 
racial somatology, anti-feminism, anti-parliamentarianism and the 
spiritual differences between the blond and dark races in the fields of 
sexual behaviour, art, philosophy, commerce, politics, and warfare, 
and caste law derived from the Hindu codes of Manu. 36 The First 
World War was eventually documented as an eschatological phase of 
the manichaean struggle between the blonds and the darks. 37 

The years between 1908 and 1918 witnessed Lanz’ s increasing debt 
to contemporary volkisch publicists, with whom he corresponded. The 
Ostara was faithful to its announced intentions by tracing the harmful 
socio-economic and cultural consequences of the inferior races’ 
emancipation in all spheres of public life. These analyses were 
accompanied by empirical data gathered from contemporaryjoumalism. 
Their subjects may be traced in the titles of the series. Among 
numbers 26 to 89 seven were narrowly concerned with a classification 
of racial types (in 1909), eighteen were devoted to the subjects of sex, 
women and prostitution (chiefly between 1 909 and 1913), twenty-nine 
to spiritual and physical comparisons between the blonds and darks 
and nine to religious and occult subjects, which usually formed the 
philosophical basis of racial manichaeism. Here one can trace Lanz’s 
debt to the theosophical and occult subcultures. 

The principal theosophist of Lanz’s acquaintance, with the exception 
of Guido List, was Harald Graved van Jostenoode (1856-1932), who 
lived in Heidelberg. By 1908 this proto- Ariosophist had written 
several volkisch texts imbued with a mixture of Christian and Buddhist 
piety, including the strongly theosophical Aryavarta ( 1 905) and he had 
also contributed to a variety' of nationalist and theosophical periodicals. 
He subsequently edited Franz Hartmann’s Neue Lotusbliiten in 1913 
after the latter’s death. Injuly 1906 Graved wrote an Ostara number, in 
which he demanded the return of the Flabsburg crown jewels to the 
German Reich. This claim symbolized a potent millenarian hope of 
contemporary Austrian Pan-Germans. A century earlier, on 6 August 



100 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

1806, the Holy Roman Empire had been formally dissolved, with the 
last emperors having resided in Vienna, where the imperial regalia 
had remained. The Second Reich, established by Bismarck in 1871 
and excluding Austria, represented the focus of rising national 
fortunes to the Pan-Germans of the multi-national Habsburg empire 
in the east. The return of the regalia to a new imperial capital at 
Nuremberg would, to these individuals, have represented the 
restoration of a neo-Carolingian Greater Germanic Empire under 
Hohenzollern rule, which would reabsorb the historic German 
territories of Austria, Bohemia and Moravia. Twelve statutes, based on 
racist, nationalist, anti-capitalist and anti- feminist sentiments, together 
with a blueprint for a national Church inspired by mystical and 
theosophical piety, completed Gravell’s guidelines for a pan-German 
empire which was ultimately to include Belgium, Holland, and 
Scandinavia. 38 

The next indication of a theosophical bias in the Ostara was Gravell’s 
second contribution in July 1908. Here he outlined a thoroughly 
theosophical conception of race and a programme for the restoration 
of Aryan authority in the world. His quoted occult sources were texts 
by Annie Besant, Blavatsky’s successor as leader of the international 
Theosophical Society at London, and Rudolf Steiner, the Secretary 
General of its German branch in Berlin. 35 Gravell’s theosophical 
contribution was followed by Lanz’s Bibeldokumente series (1907-8) at 
the occult publishing house of Paul Zillmann. Here the new theo- 
sophical direction of Lanz’s thought, previously indicated only by 
Gravell’s contributions to his magazine, is quite explicit. 

The second number of this series, Die Theosophie und die assyrischen 
‘Menschentiere’ [Theosophy and the Assyrian ' Man-Beasts’ ], showed how 
Lanz was now exploiting the materials of modern theosophy, as he 
had already done in the cases of archaeology and anthropology, in 
order to substantiate his own neo-gnostic religion. He began by giving 
a selective exegesis of Blavatsky’s major text Die Geheimlehre (1897- 
1901), comparing her occult anthropogeny favourably with the 
findings of contemporary palaeontology. He evidently shared her 
belief in the sunken continents of Lemuria and Atlantis and reproduced 
a palaeogeographical map of the world for comparison with the map 
of Lemuria, drawn by the English theosophist, William Scott-Elliot. 40 
He compared her discussions of the lapsed third eye in man with 
those of Bolsche and Klaatsch, while recognizing his pagatu, udumi and 
baziati of Assyrian lore in her account of prehistoric monsters. Finally, 
and most important, Lanz found a striking theosophical confirmation 



101 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

of his bestial conception of the Fall. The eighth stanza of Dzyan, verses 
30—2, had related how the early Lemurians first developed into two 
distinct sexes and how they brought about a Fall from divine grace by 
interbreeding with attractive but inferior species and producing 
monsters: ‘Sie nahmen Weiber, die sckon anzusehen waren, Weiber von den 
Gemutlosen, den Schwachkopfigen. Sie brachten Ungetume hervor, bosartige 
Damonen’ 4 1 [‘They took she- animals unto themselves, she- animals 
which were beautiful but the daughters of those with no soul nor 
intelligence. Monsters they bred, evil demons’], Lanz concluded his 
favourable evaluation of the Secret Doctrine with a comparison of 
Blavatsky’s scheme of five root- races and the anthropogenic theory of 
the palaeontologist Stratz, published in Naturgeschichte der Menschen 
(1904). According to Lanz, the fourth root- race of Adanteans had 
divided into pure and bestial sub-species, corresponding to the early 
anthropoids and the anthropomorphic apes. The fateful mistake of 
the former’s descendants, the fifth root- race of Aryans or homo sapiens, 
had been persistent interbreeding with the latter’s descendants. 42 

Lanz’s adoption of theosophy for this sexo- racist gnosis falls within 
the context of a wider familiarity with the quasi-scientific ideas of the 
contemporary Monist League in Germany. 43 The earliest indication of 
this familiarity is provided by an Ostara number of 1910. Here Lanz 
discussed such philosophies as the Monism of Ernst Haeckel and 
Wilhelm Ostwald, and the neo- vitalism of Bergson’s plagiarists in 
Germany. Although Haeckel considered himself a materialist, his 
romantic Naturphilo sophie and ‘pan-psychism’ (a belief in the world 
soul and its manifestation as energy in all matter) were far from 
reflecting ordinary mechanistic materialism. Lanz, who contributed 
to Das freie Wort, a Monist periodical, subscribed to similar ideas, and 
also imputed such a ‘pan-psychic’ tradition to the writings of medieval 
and early modern mystics, Albertus Magnus, Comenius, Boehme and 
Angelus Silesius. He claimed that this ‘idealistic monism’ was consistent 
with the progressive outlook of the heroic Aryan race, while materialism 
connoted an earthbound, pessimistic attitude characteristic of the 
lower dark races. 44 These esoteric claims should not obscure Lanz’s 
debt to the contemporary Monist movement. 

This ‘idealism’, which may be traced to early nineteenth-century 
Romanticism and later philosophies of will and vitalism, together with 
the materials of Monism and modern occultism, formed the intellectual 
basis of Lanz’s previously theological sexo-racist gnosis. Lanz was 
convinced that this doctrine of energy had lain at the heart of an 
imaginary tradition of ‘ario-christian’ mysticism, originally practised 



102 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

by the Aryan god-men and perpetuated by the monastic traditions of 
the West. The earliest biblical writings and the foundations of St 
Benedict of Nursia, St Bernard of Clairvaux and St Bruno had been 
followed by an apostolic succession of ‘ario-chrisrian’ mystics, including 
Meister Eckhart, Paracelsus, Johann Georg Hamann, Jung-Stilling, 
and Carl du Prel. 45 This register of historical agents of the secret gnosis 
demonstrates well how Lanz recruited the several Western traditions 
of monastic reform, medieval mysticism, Renaissance hermeticism, 
eighteenth-century theosophy and modern occultism for a cryptic 
tradition of theozoological gnosis. The need to posit a mythological 
tradition for his illiberal and racist views shows how similar his ideas 
are to those of List despite the difference of their theological and 
cultural preferences. Like List, Lanz was also claiming an elite status 
for the guardians and priests of this secret tradition. 

Lanz extended his ideological debt to occultism when he began to 
apply the materials of the contemporary German astrological revival 
to his fantasies of an apocalyptic victory for the Central Powers during 
the First World War. Since this revival had a specifically theosophical 
background in Germany, most of the new astrological texts by Karl 
Brandler-Pracht, Otto Pollner, Ernst Tiede, and Albert Kniepf appeared 
under the imprint of the Theosophical Publishing House at Leipzig 
after 19 10. 46 In January 1915 Lanz reviewed the astrological literature 
of Pollner and Tiede. Pollner’ s first work, Mundan-Astrologie [Mundane 
Astrology] (1914), laid the basis of political astrology by casting the 
horoscopes of states, peoples and cities, in order to determine their 
future destiny, while his second work, Schicksal und Sterne [Destiny and the 
Stars ] (1914), traced the careers of European royalty according to the 
dictates of their natal horoscopes. Tiede gave an analysis of all 
belligerent state-leaders’ horoscopes, before declaring that there was a 
two to one chance of victory for the Central Powers. 47 In the spring 
Lanz published further reviews of astrological and prophetic literature 
by Arthur Grobe-Wudschky, Brandler-Pracht and Albert Kniepf, who 
had applied the predictions of the early modern French seer Michael 
Nostradamus (1503-66) to the present European conflict. 48 

By August 1915 Lanz had sufficiendy assimilated the new astrological 
and prophetic ideas to apply them to his own millenarian interpretation 
of the war. Following the theories of Pollner and a Dutch astrologer 
writing under the pseudonym C. Libra, Lanz assigned to all major 
countries a planet and a zodiacal sign, the astrological properties of 
which corresponded to the culture and spirit of their racial stock 
according to the precepts of the ‘ario-christian’ gnosis. 49 This ‘racial- 



103 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

metaphysical’ astrology was then applied to the international hostilities. 
Having reviewed the events of 1 9 1 4 and 1915 in the light of this neo- 
gnostic apocalyptic, Lanz turned to prophecy proper. The present war 
supposedly signalled that messianic ‘fullness of time’. Increasing 
racial confusion, enormous military and cultured upheavals concluded 
by a new Mongol invasion of Europe during the period 1960 to 1988 
traced the course of the incipient ‘messianic woes’ to the climax of 
demonic dominion on earth. This hard trial heralded the millennium, 
when a new Church of the Holy Spirit would arise to create a supra- 
national Aryan state, the government of which would fall to an eternal 
priesthood privy to the secrets of the ancient sexo-racist gnosis. The 
geographical origin of this coming racist millennium was the city of 
Vienna, which would assume a dominant role in the new politico- 
religious world order. 50 

In the late 1920 s Lanz invoked an astrological scheme of apocalyptic 
prophecy, by which he could interpret the course of Western political 
and religious development. He took the Platonic year lasting 26,280 
terrestrial years as a basic chronological unit, and then derived the 
‘cosmic month’ of 2,190 years, which was divided into three ‘cosmic 
weeks’, each of which lasted approximately 730 years and defined a 
particular cultural epoch. One ‘cosmic week’ was supposed to have 
commenced in AD 480 at the birth of St Benedict of Nursia, widely 
regarded as the founder of medieval Western monasticism. In the 
period 480-1210 society was ruled by ‘spiritual-chivalrous master- 
orders’ (Benedictines, Cistercians, Templars and Teutonic Knights), 
because Mars was in Pisces. By contrast, the rule of the vulgar masses 
characterized the period 1210-1920, because the moon was in Pisces: 
the Turks and Jews weakened the European polity and the spread of 
towns, capitalism and the ideologies of democracy and nationalism 
encouraged the ascendancy of the proletariat and racial inferiors. 
Turning to prophecy proper, Lanz foretold that the next period 1 920- 
2640 would witness the revival of hierarchies, because Jupiter would 
be in Pisces: ‘ Nicht mehr Parlamente . . . sondem weise Priesterfursten, 
geniale, ariosophisch-mystisch geschulte Patrizier und Fiihrer ritterlich-geistlicher 
Gekeimorden werden die Geschicke der Volker leiteri' [‘No longer will 
parliaments determine the fate of the people. In their place will rule 
wise priest-kings, genial patricians with an understanding of ario- 
sophical mysticism and leaders of chivalrous and spiritual secret 
orders’]. Lanz hailed Spain, Italy, and Hungary as the ‘Jupiter 
countries’, precursors of the approaching global reformation, because 
of their right-wing dictatorships during the 1920s. 51 



104 




JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

The principal features of Lanz’s ideology prior to 1918 were thus 
the notion of an occult gnosis, its historical lapse or suppression as an 
established religion owing to satanic design, and its imminent 
resurrection in order to secure the cosmos for a new Aryan elite, with 
which Lanz clearly identified himself. The nature of this elite forms 
the subject of the next chapter. But Lanz’s revolutionary vision also 
possesses a specifically Austrian quality. His invocation ‘Austria erit in 
orbe ultima’, the motto of the Habsburg emperors in the fifteenth and 
sixteenth centuries, recalls a baroque vision of Catholic world-rule 
which was peculiar to Southern Europe. In view of Lanz’s profound 
attachment as a young man to ecclesiastical ritual, ceremonial, and 
culture, it seems likely that this vision of a new world-order was 
inspired, like the old Habsburg sense of mission and ‘desire for 
planetary conquest, an empire on which the sun never sets’, by the 
grandeur and universality of Catholicism in Austria. 52 



105 




9 



The Order of the New Templars 



LANZ’S desire to found a chivalrous order evolved direcdy from his 
racist-elitist gnosis. Although his theology was formally complete by 
1905, he had not yet identified its historical agents beyond the 
Israelites and the early Christians. In the course of the Ostara series this 
rudimentary definition was extended to include eminent medieval 
saints, monastic founders, and mystics; these individual agents of the 
gnosis were supplemented by the reformed monastic orders and the 
associated military orders of the Crusades. This choice reflects 
personal preferences. His adoption of chivalrous agents for the 
gnostic tradition was fostered by a complex of factors involving his 
own psychological disposition and the neo-romantic climate of 
Austrian and German culture at the turn of the century. Even as a boy 
Lanz had felt drawn to the Middle Ages and its pageant of knights, 
noblemen, and monks. His decision to enter the Cistercian novitiate 
owed much to these sentiments, and it is likely that his adult desire to 
identify with the aristocracy derived from similar fantasies. As a scion 
of the German nobility, Lanz could feel assured of a tangible link with 
a venerable tradition that transcended the present. 

Adolf Josef Lanz was born of middle-class parents, whose male 
forebears can be traced back to the early eighteenth century, so it 
seems improbable that his claims to aristocratic lineage were legitimate. 1 
Some scant evidence can nevertheless be found to vindicate these 
claims. The name ‘Liebenfels’, which Lanz had hyphenated to his own 
by 1903, 2 indicated his descent from an old Swiss-Swabian family 
originating in the fifteenth century. Lanz also used the blazon of this 
family, an eagle wing argent upon a gules field. The founder of this 
line, Hans Lanz, had been a barber-surgeon at Meersburg before 
rapidly ascending the social scale. After joining an aristocratic 
fraternity at Constance in 1454, he married a noblewoman in 1463, 



106 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

thereby acquiring a title to her estates including Schloss Liebenfels 
near Mammern. Between 1471 and 1475 Hans Lanz acted as town 
magistrate at Constance. He was subsequently ennobled by Emperor 
Frederick III, with whom he stood in high favour for his representation 
of Austrian interests in Switzerland. Having been granted the title 
Lanz von Liebenfels, he bore the eagle wing argent upon a gules field 
blazon of the Liebenfels family, which had died out at the end of the 
fourteenth century. The descendants of Hans Lanz von Liebenfels (d. 
1502) held high offices in Church and State: women in three 
successive generations became princess-abbesses at Sackingen during 
the eighteenth century. The family cannot be traced later thane. 1790.® 

In 1878 one C. von Lantz, a Russian army colonel serving in 
Austria, also thought that he was related to the Lanz von Liebenfels, 
but his connection with the Viennese family is unproven. 4 In 1899 a 
handbook of bourgeois heraldry described Lanz’s family as the 
Viennese line of the noble Lanz von Liebenfels, a family of ‘Bavarian 
origin, some of whose descendants had settled in Silesia and other 
foreign countries’. The decorated Russian officer was also mentioned 
but not identified as a close relative. 5 Although there is no further 
evidence of an emigration to Eastern Europe, it remains conceivable 
that Lanz’s ancestor, Matthias Lanz (b. 1720), was a derogated 
descendant of such emigrants. Besides this slight evidence for a 
genealogical link, several rumours spread amongst Lanz’s friends 
regarding his marital title to the name: one story records his marriage 
to a Liebenfels upon leaving the abbey in 1899, another relates that he 
was on intimate terms with a family called von Liebenfels- Frascati. 6 
Whether it was an oral tradition of noble origins amongst his own 
family or a liaison with a noble family which led Lanz to assume an 
aristocratic title will probably never be known with certainty, despite 
extensive ancestral research by his followers. 7 The real importance of 
this obscure genealogical issue concerns Lanz’s later foundation of a 
chivalrous order. While noble status satisfied his desire for member- 
ship of an enduring traditional elite, his own order could fulfil a 
similar function. 

Besides these fantasies of nobility, one must consider his romantic 
reverence for holy orders, which was compounded by a subsequent 
interest in the Knights Templars. Lanz’s first interest in the Templars 
stemmed from a reading of the medieval lays concerning Parsifal and 
the knights of the Grail. These epics were enjoying a contemporary 
vogue owing to their operatic treatment by Richard Wagner and the 
subsequent popularization of their mythology by such neo- romantic 



107 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

authors as Erwin Kolbenheyer and Friedrich Lienhard between 1900 
and 1 9 1 4. In their novels mystical pilgrimages and chivalrous heroism 
combined to create an emotional climate in which the figure of the 
grail- knight denoted the spiritual man’s search for eternal values in a 
modern trivialized world based on materialistic assumptions. 8 Given 
Lanz’s contacts with contemporary Lebensreform groups, this symbolism 
would have been quite familiar to him. By 1907 he had concluded that 
the ‘Templeisen’ knights of Grail association were really the historical 
Templars, whose valiant conduct in the Holy Land had guaranteed 
their transformation into an archetype of religious chivalry in the 
thirteenth century. 9 

The Templar knights were closely associated with the Cistercian 
order. St Bernard of Clairvaux, the Cistercian founder, had composed 
the Templar rule in 1128 and later addressed a laudation to the 
knights for their martial championship of the Chrisdan cause. Lanz’s 
own regard for the Templars was probably reinforced by the fact that 
he had been a Cistercian himself. According to his fantasy, these 
knights had actually championed the racist gnosis during the Middle 
Ages. Their ambition had been the creation of 'a Greater Germanic 
order-state, which would encompass the entire Mediterranean area 
and extend its sphere of influence deep into the Middle East’. 10 In 
1913 he published a short study, in which the grail was interpreted as 
an electrical symbol pertaining to the ‘panpsychic’ powers of the pure- 
blooded Aryan race. The quest of the ‘Templeisen’ for the Grail was a 
metaphor for the strict eugenic practices of the Templar knights 
designed to breed god-men. 11 The Templars had become the key 
historical agent of Lanz’s sexo-racist gnosis before 1914. 

Ideas of piety and chivalry, sentiments which were widespread in 
theosophical and neo-romantic subcultures, thus fused with modern 
notions of racial salvation, elitism, and pan-Germanism in this ‘ario- 
heroic’ image of the Templars. Their trial and suppression in 1312 
acquired an occult meaning within this sectarian Weltanschauung. The 
brutal suppression of this noble order accordingly signified the 
triumph of the racial inferiors who had long sought to remove the 
chief advocates of the eugenic cult. The ascendancy of these inferiors 
in Europe, coupled with the burgeoning racial chaos of the following 
centuries, had corrupted ‘ario-christian’ civilization and thus created 
the disorder of the modern world. Nor did Lanz restrict himself to 
nostalgic visions of a glorious past. Once he had unearthed the true 
occult meaning of the Scriptures, supposedly suppressed by the post- 
thirteenth-century Establishment, it remained to revive the racist 



108 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

gnosis in the present. Lanz decided to refound the lapsed military 
order as his own Ordo Novi Templi (ONT) for a new crusade. 

With the aid of his Viennese friends Lanz purchased Burg Werfen- 
stein as the headquarters of his order in 1907. This castle was a 
romantic medieval ruin perched upon a sheer rock cliff above the 
River Danube at the village of Struden near Grein in Upper Austria. 12 
In the December 1907 issue of Ostara, Lanz published a programme 
of the ONT, describing the order as an Aryan mutual-aid association 
founded to foster racial consciousness through genealogical and 
heraldic research, beauty-contests, and the foundation of racist 
utopias in the underdeveloped parts of the world. He also wrote that 
he was founding a museum of Aryan anthropology, for which he had 
secured a suitable site (i.e. Burg Werfenstein). 13 Lanz celebrated 
Christmas Day 1 907 by hoisting a swastika flag upon the tower of Burg 
Werfenstein. 14 Franz Herndl, who inhabited a hermitage upon Worth 
Island opposite the casde, remembers that two flags were flown: the 
first displayed the Liebenfels blazon, while the second showed a red 
swastika surrounded by four blue fleurs-de-lis upon a golden field. 15 
The image of a feudal lord was heightened by Lanz’s increasing use of 
heraldic seals: one showed his blazon and carried the inscription ‘Jorg 
Lanz de Liebenfels, Dom. de Werfenstein eges.’, while another related 
to the ONT. 16 He also celebrated the ancient origins of his castle in a 
study which suggested that Werfenstein was a site associated with the 
Nibelungs of the fifth century. 17 By these devices, Lanz gave ritual 
expression both to his own nobility and his fulfilment of a traditional 
mission. 

The earliest activities of the ONT appear to have been festivals 
held at Burg Werfenstein during 1908. Once in the spring several 
hundred guests arrived by steamer from Vienna to the sound of small 
cannon fire from the beflagged castle. After luncheon at local inns, the 
large party listened to a concert in the castle courtyard; festivities 
lasted late into the night with bonfires and choir-singing. This event 
was widely reported in the national press, thus helping to publicize the 
ideas of the Ostara to a broader audience. 18 Alongside these profane 
celebrations of Pan- German inspiration Lanz was creating a liturgy 
and ceremonial for his order, which remained largely secret to non- 
initiates. At this time Lanz began to devise a rule for the ONT in the 
form of the kind of disciplinary code observed by traditional religious 
orders. Although it was not printed until after the First World War, it is 
probable that a similar manuscript document circulated among 
members of the order much earlier. Historical evidence concerning 



109 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

this rule provides a picture of the development of sectarian activities 
between 1908 and 1918. 

The nine ardcles of the rule comprised a statement of the order’s 
purpose and basis; an account of brothers’ rights and duties; a brief 
description of the order’s rituals and several articles concerning 
ceremonial, including hierarchy, vestments and heraldry. Lasdy, the 
rule added articles pertaining to order property and the procedure for 
disputes and resignation. 19 The first article described the ONT as a 
racial- religious association, which could be joined only by persons of 
predominantly pure blood, namely those who were more or less 
blond-haired, blue-eyed and possessed of an ‘ario-heroic’ figure 
according to Lanz’s analysis of racial somatology in the Ostara issues of 
1908 and 1909. 20 This aristocratic association existed to harmonize 
science, art and ethics into a gnostic religion that was to foster the 
maintenance of the threatened Aryan race in all countries of the world. 
Its first commandment exhorted each to love his neighbour, by which 
Lanz understood the racial kinsman. The duties of brothers embraced 
professional, social, scientific and religious fields of activity. Members 
of the order were required to display preference towards other 
brothers and racial equals in matters concerning professional appoint- 
ments, welfare, and business. They were also charged with the 
recruitment of suitable novices and expected to contract eugenically 
proper marriages. Brothers of means were encouraged to found new 
ONT houses on sites distinguished by natural beauty and historical 
association, especially of a monastic or Templar character: such 
houses were to form ‘ario-christian’ centres and racial utopias in 
Europe and overseas. 21 

While the scientific activities of the brothers involved research into 
genealogy and anthropology, their religious practices introduce the 
esoteric aspect of the order. These practices stressed the traditional 
status of both order and doctrine by using a quasi-orthodox liturgy of 
psalms, prayers and readings accompanied by organ music. During 
the 1920s Lanz composed several copious ritual books, which 
reflected his Catholic and Cistercian inspiration. The basic text was 
the Hebdomadarium, which contained the three offices for each day of 
the week, namely matins, prime and compline. Each office had a 
space for a reading relating to ‘ario-christian’ doctrine from the 
Festivarium NT. This book of festival readings comprised three 
volumes: the Legendarium provided readings describing the historical 
and cultural traditions of the racial religion for matins on each day of 
the year. The materials for its 1,400 pages were drawn from orthodox 



110 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 



Christianity, modern science and the acts of the New Templars; the 
other volumes, the Evangelarium and the Visionarium , performed a 
similar function in the prime and compline offices. These ritual books 
were supplemented by a hymnal (Cantuarium), a book of psalms and 
an Imaginarium NT of devotional pictures, all of which fused the 
orthodox forms and beliefs of Catholicism with the sexo-racist gnosis. 
According to Lanz, these rituals were designed to beautify and 
ennoble the lives of brothers by relating them to the waxing and 
waning of nature through a full religious calendar. 22 As such, these 
practices reflect the central function of the sect: the restoration of 
socio- cultural order through rituals using a traditional yet also racist 
form of liturgy in an aesthetically pleasing and communal setting. 

Besides this liturgy Lanz made provision for a hierarchy of orders. 
According to the rule brothers were divided into seven orders 
corresponding to their service and degree of racial purity. The lowest 
order consisted of Servers (SNT), who were either less than 50 per cent 
racially pure, as defined by Lanz’s racial somatology, or persons 
under twenty-four years who had not yet undergone a racial test. The 
next order was formed by Familiars (FNT), persons who had made 
themselves of especial service to the ONT but did not wish for a formal 
reception. The following order of Novices (NNT) included all 
members aged over twenty-four years and being more than 50 per 
cent racially pure, who had not yet been tested for advancement to the 
superior orders. These orders comprised the Masters (MONT) and 
the Canons (CONT) who possessed respectively 50-75 and 75-100 
per cent degrees of racial purity. The two highest orders of the 
hierarchy were those of Presbyter (pONT) and Prior (PONT). Any 
Master or Canon was eligible for promotion to the order of Presbyter 
once he had founded a new house or site for the ONT. His rights 
included the saying of office and celebration of mass, but excluded the 
reception and investiture of brothers. A Presbyter whose chapter 
exceeded five Masters or Canons was eligible for installation as a Prior, 
who enjoyed all rights of holy office. On all occasions the brothers 
observed this order of precedence, while ranking according to the date 
of their reception within each order. 25 

Lanz embellished his hierarchy with a description of the vestments, 
heraldic device and title proper to the order of each brother. The basic 
robe worn by all brothers was a white cowled habit decorated with a 
red chivalric cross, the form of which varied according to the bearer’s 
order. Presbyters wore additionally a red biretta and stole, while a 
Prior also carried a golden staff. This ritualism extended to the 

ill 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

blazons placed above the seats in the chapter-house. Each brother’s 
family coat-of-arms was mounted upon a baroque surround, the exact 
design of which corresponded to his order. The surround also 
displayed an angel and a faun, which represented the dualistic gnosis 
of the ONT. Lasdy, brothers chose an order-name which they used in 
the formula ‘Fra + Name + order + house’, e.g. Fra Dedef CONT ad 
Werfenstein. The style of address for brothers was ‘honorabilis’ and 
‘reverendus’ for Presbyters and Priors. 24 It will be obvious that this 
fusion of orthodox monastic and racist symbolism in the hierarchy 
ceremonial worked to emphasize the centred importance of the gnosis 
in the minds of brothers. 

The ONT liturgy and ceremonial acquired this form in 1921, but 
may have been practised earlier. The extent to which this meticulous 
rule was observed up until the end of the First World War can be 
inferred from scattered references in the Ostara numbers. In 1911 
Lanz first described Burg Werfenstein as the priory of the order. 25 
Regular receptions had apparently taken place as early as 1908, 26 and 
the use of order-names and orders began to develop before the war. 
By 1912 Lanz was calling himself Prior of the Order, 27 while other 
brothers were mentioned in the Ostara numbers between 1913 and 
1918. A devotional poem, entitled ‘Templeisenlehre’, was published 
by Fra Erwin NNT von Werfenstein in 1 9 1 3, while Detlef Schmude, an 
early enthusiast in Germany, signed his contributions as Fra Detlef 
CONT zu Werfenstein in 1915. Other brothers called Rainald, Curt 
and Theoderich, were styled CONT, MONT and SNT, respectively. 
By 1915, the erstwhile Novice Erwin had advanced to the order of 
Canon. 28 

Besides this minor ceremonial, several other activities indicate the 
development of sectarian consciousness during the war. These 
activities include the composition of devotional songs and verse, and 
the decoration of the priory with votive paintings. In 1915 and 1916 
Lanz issued a New Templar breviary in two parts which contained 
‘ario-christian’ psalms and canticles written by himself and his closest 
followers. These pieces were based on traditional Christian texts, but 
their meaning was changed in a racist and gnostic sense, thus 
anticipating the later ritual books. The strident supplication to Christ- 
Frauja (a Gothic name for Jesus) for racial salvation and the sacrifice 
and extermination of the inferior races reflected the familiar dualist 
doctrine. 29 Votive paintings for the Blue Templar Room at Burg 
Werfenstein included that of Hugo de Payns, founder and first Grand 
Master of the Templars and that of Saint Bernard embracing the 



112 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

suffering Christ. 30 All these details confirm the evolution of order 
ritual at an early date before or during the war. 

New Templar religiosity also sustained brothers in the field. Fra 
Detlef wrote a series of devotional poems about St Bernard, the 
Templars and fortitude, while serving in the German army on the 
eastern front in Poland during 1915. These poems celebrated the 
saint’s protection of his servants and their blessing as priests of the 
racist gnosis. Fra Curt also composed a martial poem after the batdes 
of the Nidda. 31 Other poems described the River Danube and Burg 
Werfenstein as sacred sites of the holy gnosis. Such verse celebrated 
the shining image of the casde-priory against the dark valley of racial 
chaos; above the sunlit battlements of the ‘casde of the Grail’ fluttered 
the swastika flag, while white-cowled brothers performed the holy 
office in the grove below. 32 

Ritual activity in the order clearly occurred before and during the 
war, but it is difficult to know how many individuals were involved in 
the esoteric side of the ONT. In addition to the already-mentioned full 
brothers of the order, Lanz created several Familiars, including 
August Strindberg, Guido von List, General Blasius von Schemua, 
Gustav Simons, the inventor of a reform diet bread in Vienna, and 
Wilhelm Diefenbach, the pioneer of reform-culture and teacher of the 
theosophical artist Hugo Hoppener (Fidus). 33 Lanz also claimed that 
Lord Kitchener and Karl Kraus, the Austrian satirist, were Ostara 
readers. The popularity of the Ostara proves that the ONT was 
familiar to a great number of Austrians, particularly in Vienna. 
Survivors of the period recall that the Ostara was widely distributed 
from city tobacco-kiosks and was widely read in the right-wing 
students’ fencing associations, while Lanz claimed an enormous 
edition of 100,000 copies in 1907. 34 One may conclude that the 
chauvinist and racist ideas of Lanz were broadly endorsed by Ostara 
readers, even if only a small minority were admitted to the esoteric 
practices of the New Templars. 

After the first Ostara series was terminated in early 1917, only a few 
second editions of earlier numbers were issued. By the time of the 
armistice in November 1918, the extensive dissolution of the 
Habsburg empire was painfully apparent. Mutinies, food riots, and 
secessionist revolts in the provinces of Carniola, Bohemia, and 
Moravia announced the collapse of imperial rule after nearly four 
hundred years. During the turmoil of autumn 1918, which appeared 
to confirm his darkest predictions concerning the triumph of the 
inferior races, Lanz left Vienna for Hungary. His first post-war 



113 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

publication, Weltende und Weltwende (1923), described the subsequent 
events and conditions in apocalyptic terms. The food shortages, the 
currency crises and soaring cost of living, and the ubiquitous presence 
of Allied missions, intended to control the enforcement of territorial 
changes and economic reparations, confirmed his belief that a 
monstrous conspiracy was responsible for the destruction of historic 
political entities, the removal of traditional elites, and the economic 
demoralization of the upper and middle classes. Henceforth, a rabid 
anti-Semitism and abeliefina‘Jewish-Bolshevik-Freemasonic’ alliance 
characterize his ‘ario-christian’ ideology. 

The events of 1918-23, which transformed the political map of 
Central and Eastern Europe, were cataclysmic, particularly for those 
who identified themselves with the pre-war order. The revolution and 
civil war in Germany and Russia, the triumph of popular over 
aristocratic forms of government, and the rise of parvenus represented 
a colossal manifestation of disorder in the minds of many individuals. 
People who had perceived a threat to their cultural norms before 1914 
were now confronted with experiences appearing to verify their worst 
fears. Only against this chaotic political and economic background 
can the new relevance of N ew Templar doctrine in the post-war period 
be appreciated: for those who were subject to this sense of disorientation, 
the ONT could offer the promise of a crusade for absolute values 
against a dispensation of chaos and darkness. The post-war history of 
the ONT introduces the sectarian revival of Lanz’s sexo-racist gnosis 
in each of the three defeated Central European nations. 

The principal actor in the post-war German revival of the order was 
Dedef Schmude. His enthusiasm for the order had led him to found 
its second priory at Hollenberg near Kornelimunster on 9 February 
1914 s5 After service in the German army Schmude returned in 1918 
to Grossottersleben in the Harz where he wrote a novel based on his 
experiences in the ONT. Vom Schwingen und Klingen und gottlichen Dingen 
[Vibrations, Resonances and Divine Things ] (1919) focused on the life- 
enhancing value of occult mental vibrations between persons involved 
in devotional activities based on Lebensreform. The novel described a 
young man’s woodland chapel consecrated to mystical Christian 
worship and its circle of guardians. Besides its explicit indication of 
ONT ceremonial, including the order habits and baroque heraldry 
with the angel-faun symbolism, the book reveals a close affinity to the 
literature of the ‘quest’ in points of theme and style. 36 But Schmude 
was also active in a practical capacity. In March 1 9 1 9 he was engaged as 



114 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

an army captain in the organization of a volunteer work-camp corps at 
Magdeburg. This corps was intended to generate a will to work 
amongst the unemployed in the chaotic post-war economy by means 
of co-operative housing and agrarian schemes. 37 

Schmude began to generate support for the order in Germany soon 
after the war. In June 1921 he organized the printing of the ONT rule 
at Magdeburg, in which he, a certain Johann Walthari Wolfl and Lanz 
signed as the Priors of Hollenberg, Werfenstein and Marienkamp. 38 In 
1922 he started to publish a second Ostara series, in which the first 
nineteen numbers, originally written by various Pan- German authors 
in 1 905-7, were to be replaced by new issues, which included a second 
serial edition of Theozoologie . His first number, Die Ostara und das Reich 
der Blonden, reiterated the ‘ario-christian’ canon with abundant quo- 
tations from Lanz: ‘racial history is the key to the understanding of 
politics’, and ‘all ugliness and evil stems from interbreeding’. Schmude 
distinguished five racial types and examined the causes of cultural 
collapse, while claiming that ‘all oriental and ancient States had 
declined with the appearance of mob- rule and the dictatorship of the 
proletariat, as soon as the inferior races had won the upper hand over 
the blond “ario-heroic” ruling caste’. 39 These words reveal the 
significance of Lanz’s old racial theories to individuals distressed by 
the effects of defeat, economic collapse, and revolution upon their 
traditional values. 

At this time Schmude met Friedrich Franz von Hochberg (1875- 
1954), a Silesian count and a cousin of the ruling Prince of Pless. He 
had pursued a military career in the Prussian Army but had retired at 
the end of the war to commence practice as an architect near Zittau in 
Saxony from 1920. At the village Wanscha he ran his ‘Rosenbauhiitte’ 
(Rose-Lodge), which specialized in designs for country-house 
architecture. Hochberg greatly bemoaned the contemporary state of 
affairs in Germany. He may have been obliged to resign his commission 
in the army due to Allied directives on military reductions, and his 
family estate at Rohnstock was threatened by Polish incursions until 
the German Freecorps victory of 1921 . Hochbergjoined the ONT in a 
troubled state of mind. He was designated Presbyter at Hollenberg by 
May 1 923; the following December he admitted that the ONT was his 
sole comfort in ‘diesem ilblen Zwergen-und Tschandalenlande’ w [‘ in this 
evil land of pygmies and Tschandale’]. 

In spring 1924 Schmude travelled to Persia, hoping to found an 
ONT colony at Tabriz. Hochberg assumed the duties of Prior at 
Hollenberg during his eighteen-month absence. The subsequent 



115 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



activities of this priory testify to his enthusiasm and organizational 
energy. In that year three chapters were held by the German brothers 
of the order, a Whitsun chapter on 7/8 June at Burg H., where the 
thirteen brothers present included Friedbert Asboga, a writer on 
astrological magic and medicine, and Konrad Weitbrecht, a Swabian 
forester who led an ONT group in his region; a September chapter on 
20/21 September in South Germany for the Swabian circle; finally, an 
Advent chapter on 29/30 November at Hanover, where Hochberg 
and Weitbrecht were joined by about ten other brothers. The 
numbers in attendance were evidently small and one cannot be sure of 
their social background. While several of the Swabians had rural 
occupations, it is recorded that Prince Hans Heinrich XV of Pless 
made several donations to the order. Brothers’ descriptions of their 
experiences at the chapters emphasize mystical atmosphere, the 
romance of Gothic and chivalrous trappings and the beauty of nature. 
The general tone of feeling was a pleasure in the tempora ry suspension 
of mundane and unpleasant aspects of life and a sense of peace and 
order. 41 

The priory of Hollenberg consisted of brothers in widely separated 
parts of Germany and possessed no fixed seat. Efforts were made to 
find a suitable building, in order to give the priory this symbol of 
unity. In March 1 924 Weitbrecht received a million Austrian crowns, 
collected by the brothers of the priories of Werfenstein and Marien- 
kamp, for a seat in South Germany. Hochberg meanwhile made five 
hundred gold marks available for the purchase of the small ancient 
earthwork of Wickeloh near Gross-Oesingen in Lower Saxony on 26 
March 1925. 42 Although construction commenced here that summer, 
the priory of Hollenberg was wound up after Schmude had deemed its 
survival unlikely due to adverse economic circumstances in Germany 
upon his return in January 1926. Its brothers thus transferred to the 
obedience of Werfenstein, while Schmude dissolved the priory with 
effect from 15 April 1926. 4<i But the ONT did not lapse in Germany. 
Hochberg later bought the small fort at Dietfurt near Sigmaringen, 
where the priory of Staufen was formally consecrated on 3 1 December 
1927. The Swabian circle and other German brothers performed the 
order rituals in the grotto chapel beneath the fort under the priorate of 
Hochberg until the end of the 1930s. 44 

Another circle planning the foundation of a new ONT house in 
North Germany developed among the brothers of the former 
Hollenberg chapter who had transferred exceptionally to the obedience 
of Marienkamp. This circle was led by Georg Hauerstein jun., the son of 



1)6 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 



Georg Hauerstein, a friend of List and an ONT brother associated 
with Schmude before the war. Having joined the Hollenberg chapter 
in 1922, the younger Hauerstein (Fra Eberhard) pioneered the 
Wickeloh project near his own racist utopia on the Ltineburg Heath. 
He sold his land in 1 926 and bought a house at Prerow on the Baltic 
Sea coast, which he ran as a pension called ‘Haus Ostara’. 45 He then 
acquired a religious interest in an ancient earthwork called the 
Hertesburg near Prerow, and established a fund for its purchase in 
August 1926, to which the Hungarian brothers and the Berlin palmist, 
Ernst Issberner-Haldane, contributed. 46 A wooden church was built 
on this site the next year and was consecrated as the Hertesburg 
presbytery on 8 November 1927. This foundation was related to 
medieval Templar lore and also to the mythical sunken city of Rethra- 
Vineta, supposedly the cradle of the ‘ario-heroic’ race in the pseudo- 
traditional history of the ONT. 47 Here Hauerstein generated a new 
centre of sectarian activity and issued two book-series in the early 
1930s until the site was compulsorily acquired by Hermann Goring’ s 
Reich Forestry Commission as part of the Darss National Park in 
October 1935. Hauerstein then established a new presbytery of Petena 
at the Piittenhof near Waging in Bavaria. 48 Besides these ritual ONT 
activities in Germany, the doctrine of Lanz was cultivated by a secular 
group around the occult-racist publisher Herbert Reichstein from 
October 1925. 

The last years of the war had brought Lanz a contact and friend 
whose wealth and patronage was to prove the salvation of the order in 
Austria after the war. Johann Walthari Wolfl was an industrialist who 
lived in Vienna-Hietzing and who had become an Ostara reader by 
early 1918. He was sufficiently inspired by the ONT to offer Lanz 
substantial funds on the condition that he became Prior of Werfenstein. 
Wolfl assumed this dignity following Lanz’s departure for Hungary. 
Under his priorate the Austrian section of the order flourished. The 
membership of some 50-60 brothers made frequent endowments of 
money, books, and ceremonial objects for the ornamentation of the 
priory. A small antique organ was procured from Schloss Steyeregg 
and the office was regularly performed on Sundays and other holy 
festivals. Although no chapter took place in 1923 owing to the 
unfavourable political climate in the new socialist Republic, a solemn 
Whitsun chapter was held at Werfenstein on 7/8 June 1924, attended 
by Wolfl, Lanz’s two brothers Herwik and Friedolin, and twelve other 
brothers. The celebrations began at midnight in the castle grove with 
the consecration of water and fire, followed by the reception and 



117 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



investiture of new brothers. The next morning matins and the prime 
were said in the grove followed by meditation, a conference in the Blue 
Templar Room, and a tour of the castle with an opportunity to admire 
the panoramic view of the River Danube below. In the afternoon 
compline was said followed by songs ending at four o’clock. The 
lasting impression of the chapter is recorded in a brother’s letter: ‘an 
inner sense of community, an intimate and clear tranquillity and 
harmony. . . ’. 4<) This Whitsun chapter was repeated in 1925 and 1926. 

Wolfl was responsible in the 1920s for several order-publications 
which, together with Lanz’s recendy composed office books, extended 
the liturgical basis of the O NT. In April 1923 he began to issue the 
Tabularium , a monthly diary intended for restricted circulation among 
brothers. Each of the three archpriories supplied its own notes 
relating to receptions, investitures, endowments, and significant 
events. A directory of worship for the whole period was also included. 
Reprints of extracts from brothers’ letters relating to their religious 
enthusiasm for the gnosis formed a final section. In the summer of 

1 925 Wolfl started two further series, theUbrarium and the Examinatorium. 
The former comprised short studies relating to the alleged medieval 
antecedents of the order, the castle-priory Werfenstein, and Lebensreform; 
the latter offered a question-and-answer synopsis of all order matters 
so that new brothers were quickly and comprehensively apprised of its 
history, traditions, and ceremonial. The neo-Cistercian and pseudo- 
traditional tendency of these texts is plainly evident. 50 

Wolfl devoted himself to exoteric publications in the late 1 920s and 
carried Lanz’s doctrine afresh to a wider Austrian audience. In May 

1926 he had received an authorization froth Lanz to publish a third 
Ostara series, which duly commenced in February 1927 with an 
introductory issue by himself. 51 Between 1927 and 1931 most of a 
hundred projected numbers were published with illustrated covers in 
a more luxurious format than those before the war. Wolfl also 
introduced ONT ideas to a new right-wing public in Vienna through 
an association called the Lumenclub, which was founded on 1 1 
November 1932. This group was formed to combat ‘the ugly, sickly 
and rotten aspects of contemporary culture’ by the generation of ‘an 
ethical and spiritually sublime way of life’. Although this manifesto 
echoed pre-war theosophical and Lebensreform sentiments, the Lumen- 
club was closely linked with the Ostara- Rundschau (Panarische Revue), 
which Wolfl had begun to publish in April 1931. This review was 
based on the concept of pan-Aryan co-operation between right-wing 
radical groups of the world. Its directory of useful addresses indicated 



118 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

the offices of Italian and French fascist organs, the Nazi Volkischer 
Beobachter, and patriotic and racist associations in Great Britain and the 
United States. 52 That the Lumenclub was an ONT front is confirmed 
by the membership of its committee in 1936: Wolfl, Walter Krenn (Fra 
Parsifal), and Theodor Czepl (Fra Theoderich, later Dietrich). The 
Lumenclub issued its own broadsheet and convened lectures and 
acted as a growth centre for the illegal Nazi party in Austria in the years 
preceding the downfall of the Republic and the Anschluss with 
Germany in March 1938. However, despite their modest contribution 
to the rise of Austrian fascism, the Lumenclub and the ONT were 
suppressed by the Gestapo in March 1942, according to a party edict 
of December 1938 applying to many sectarian groups. 53 

The movements of Lanz during the 1 920s provide a record of ONT 
activity in Hungary. At the end of 1 9 1 8 Lanz had left Austria, the new 
socialist administration of which confirmed his suspicions regarding 
the triumph of racial inferiors in the heart of Christian Europe, and 
gone to live in Budapest. Here he became involved in counter- 
revolutionary activities against the numerous short-lived adminis- 
trations and the Romanian invasion in 1918-19. He joined th eEbredo 
Magyarok (Awakening Hungarians), a secret patriotic association 
founded in 1 9 1 7 among soldiers discharged from the war. During the 
autumn of 1918, when the old Hungary was in dissolution and 
Karolyi’s government seemed unable or unwilling to defend her 
national interests, this and several other right-wing associations 
organized themselves in defence of Hungary’s territorial integrity 
without and her social stability within. The Ebredo Magyarok regarded 
themselves as the chief executants of the internal White Terror 
directed against members of Karolyi’s and Kun’s revolutions, the 
Communists, and the Jews, though many smaller bodies shared the 
work with them. During the Communist revolution, Lanz was nearly 
executed by a firing- squad ofinsurgents on Easter Sunday 1919; itwas 
the second time he had found himself under sentence of death for his 
part in the counter-revolution. Although the history of the secret 
associations is confused and obscure, Lanz’s involvement must have 
brought him into contact with prominent Hungarian right-wing 
radicals and thus exercised a polarizing influence upon his political 
ideas. It is significant that his new anti-Semitic and anti-Bolshevist 
notions date from this year. 54 

Following the victory of the Hungarian counter-revolution under 
the auspices of a coalition including the conservative Christian 
National Union in early 1920, Lanz served in a Christian National 



119 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

press agency attached to the Hungarian Foreign Office, where he was 
engaged in writing reactionary articles for the daily newspapers Pester 
Post and Pester Zeitung. Hungary was a far more favourable domicile 
than Austria for a person of Lanz’s political views in these troubled 
years. Lanz remained in Budapest, posing as an ‘expatriate German 
baron’ in conservative circles. His subsequent literary endeavour was 
divided between reactionaryjournalism, the composition of the ONT 
office books, and occult studies. Since the latter included astrology 
and cabbalism, it is evident that Lanz was an early participant in the 
burgeoning post-war occult subculture in Central Europe. 

The affairs of the ONT in Hungary initially focused on Lanz’s 
acquaintances in the capital where he had established his priory of 
Marienkamp in 1921. The brothers of this chapter were mostly 
overseas. One Fra Bertram was a post-war emigrant to Argentina; a 
New Yorker identified as a German nobleman (K. v. L.) was known as 
Fra Chlodio, while the Austrian chemical engineer Albrecht von 
Groling(b. 1881), known as Fra Amalarich, worked in London, Texas, 
and California. He was the son of Albrecht Friedrich von Groling 
(b. 1 85 1), a formerly prominent Viennese Pan-German associated with 
Georg von Schonerer before the war. Together with Fra Amalarich 
MONT and Fra Archibald MONT, Lanz published a cabbalistic 
study, while an active correspondence existed between him, his 
expatriate brothers, and brothers at the two other archpriories. This 
limited activity expanded after Lanz had purchased the ruined 
thirteenth-century church of Szent Balazs near the village of Szentantalfa 
on the northern shore of Lake Balaton on 6 January 1926 as a seat for 
the priory of Marienkamp. Local Hungarian friends Ladislaus and 
Wilhelm were appointed the priory’s keepers and restoration began in 
the following April. A description of the church amid a riot of vernal 
blossom testifies to Lanz’s sense of religious renovatio at their first visit: 

AmJ. April I926,fuhren Hon. Fra. Ladislaus, Fra. Wilhelm M.O.N.T. undRev. 

Fra. Georg P.O.N.T. nach St. Bias . . . Ergreifend schone Osterlandschaft: 
braunviolettes Waldgebirge, die write smaragdgriine Seeflache, ultramarinblaue, 
unendliche Ebenen, ganz unwirklich iiber dem See schwebend, blausilbemer 
Himmel, aus weissen und zart rosafarbigen bluhenden Mandel-, Kirschen- und 
Pfirsischbaumen dunkelgrauviolett aufsteigend das alte Gemauer des Propstei- 
priorats . 55 

[On 3 April 1926 Hon. Fra. Ladislaus, Fra. Wilhelm MONT and Rev. 
Fra. Georg PONT travelled to Szent Balazs. . . The Easter landscape was 
breathtakingly beautiful. The brown-violet hues of the wooded hills, 
the expansive emerald green surface of Lake Balaton, coundess 



120 




THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

ultramarine strata hanging magically above the water and the silvery 

blue sky. Among the white and pale pink blossom of the almond, cherry 

and peach trees stood the ancient grey-violet masonry of the priory.] 

In due course Lanz established a dubious body of tradition to support 
his claim that the church had been a medieval Templar house. He was 
aided in this enterprise by the Hungarian scholar and royalist, B. 
Raynald, who joined the ONT. 56 

Here in Hungary, a country which had largely succeeded in 
restoring pre-war social and political conditions, Lanz saw a future for 
the ONT. Assisted by peasants and craftsmen from the nearby villages 
of Balatoncsicso and Szentjakabfa, Lanz restored the church for the 
purposes of divine office and summer residence by mid- 1927. The 
accounts of his surviving Hungarian workers characterize the Marien- 
kamp-Szent Balazs priory as a utopian country commune consisting 
of Lanz, his noble Hungarian lady friend, her exotic cats, and foreign 
visitors. Lanz also maintained a lively dialogue with Hungarian 
royalists and Germanophiles like Tordai von Szugy and Paul Horn, a 
Member of Parliament at Budapest with astrological interests, so that 
rumours of German espionage at the colony circulated widely. Lanz 
himself cut an eccentric patrician figure in the neighbourhood. He 
conducted theological debates with the local Catholic priests and even 
encouraged the villagers to have their infants baptized at the priory. 5 '' 
The church was decorated in the liturgical manner of the ONT: 
gnostic murals of St Blasius, St George and the ‘electrotheonic grail- 
dove’ were complemented by the familiar blazonry on flag and door. 58 
Two accounts of chapters survive from the summer of 1928. The first 
describes an ecstatic reunion of brothers and Prior after the late arrival 
of Master Ortwin and friends from Budapest, while the second 
records the investiture of Georg Hauerstein jun. and Friedrich Schwic- 
kert, the astrologer and one-time List Society member, as Presbyters. 
This particular celebration was distinguished by the transfiguration of 
the order-flag into a visual record of theozoological evolution. 59 Both 
the theme of the murals and the pietistic descriptions of the chapters 
evidence the sense of holy crusade amongst the brothers who gathered 
at this remote rural site. Their mission recalled the Christian bastion 
which Hungary once presented to invading Mongol hordes and Turks 
in medieval times. Lanz’s modern racist ideology and his New 
Templars thus fell within an old established Magyar tradition of 
defence. Hungarian brothers later founded a tiny ONT presbytery 
below the Vaskapu hill at Pilisszentkereszt in northern Hungary in 
September 1937. 60 



121 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



The affairs of the ONT in Central Europe petered out following the 
establishment of authoritarian regimes and the outbreak of war. Lanz 
left Hungary for Switzerland in 1 933 and began to issue a new series of 
his writings from Lucerne. Initially impressed by Hitler, he seems to 
have had less sympathy with the National Socialists once the Third 
Reich was established. In Germanv his works were printed at Barth 
near the Darss peninsular and distributed from the nearby Hertesburg 
under Hauerstein’s auspices until 1935. After this year a Vienna 
publisher was involved until late 1937, when no more of his writings 
appeared until after 1945 in Switzerland. Paul Horn remained 
responsible for the order in Hungary right through the war but the 
German and Austrian sections of the ONT were officially suspended 
in the early 1940s. The zenith of ONT activity occurred between 1925 
and 1935. By the end of its career the ONT had colonized seven sites, 
of which no more than five were ever simultaneously active; the total 
roll of brothers received into the order probably never exceeded three 
hundred. The evolution of the order, both as a conception and an 
institution, reflects the growth of Lanz’s own interests and cultural 
discoveries within the enduring paradigm of his racist prejudice and 
his attachment to monastic and chivalrous forms. 

The significance of the ONT lies in what it expressed rather than in 
anything it achieved. It was a symptom of diffusely expressed feelings 
of discontent and the amalgam of its concerns, interests, and styles 
clearly touched subterranean anxiety in Austrian and German society. 
Its elitist and millenarian responses to this anxiety complemented a 
genocidal impulse. The ultimate aim of the ONT was world salvation 
through eugenic selection and the extermination of racial inferiors. 



122 




PART 3 



Ariosophy in Germany 



10 

The Germanenorden 



BECAUSE List preferred the role of mystagogue and master within a 
group of disciples, 1 the task of transmitting his ideas fell to his 
followers who joined racist organizations in Wilhelmian Germany. 
Such men included Colonel Karl August Hellwig, Georg Hauerstein 
sen., Bernhard Koerner, Philipp Stauff, and Eberhard von Brockhusen, 
who were all deeply imbued with List’s ideas. They carried List’s 
occult-nationalist ideas to historically significant right-wing organi- 
zations in die German Reich. Hellwig and Hauerstein were among the 
founders of the Reichshammerbund at Leipzig in May 1912, while 
Koerner, Stauff, and Brockhusen occupied key posts in the Germanen- 
orden, its clandestine sister organization. The story of Ariosophy in 
Germany will finally introduce Rudolf von Sebottendorff, an admirer 
of both List and Lanz von Liebenfels, who established between 1917 
and 1919 two racist sects at Munich whence the National Socialist 
German Workers’ (Nazi) Party originated. 

Both the Reichshammerbund and the Germanenorden were 
virulendy anti-Semitic groups, the origins of which lie in the organizing 
ability of Theodor Fritsch, a major figure of pre-war German anti- 
Semitism, and in the politics of Germany between 1900 and 1914. 
Fritsch was born of Saxon peasant parents on 28 October 1852 at 
Wiesenau near Leipzig, where he trained as a milling engineer. 2 He 
soon developed those publishing and organizational skills which 
marked both his professional and political activities. From October 
1880 he edited the Kleine Muhlen-Joumal [ Small Mills Journal], starting a 
second milling periodical in 1882 and seeking to organize the millers 
into a German Millers’ League. 

Fritsch was concerned that small tradesmen and craftsmen were 
threatened by the growth of larger firms, factories, and mass produc- 
tion. He sought to mitigate these threats through the new guild. His 



123 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

championship of small-business interests was complemented by anti- 
Semitic attitudes. Fritsch attributed the new economic order to the 
growing influence of Jewish business and finance in Germany. He had 
published in 1881 a collection of pan-German and anti-Semitic 
sayings as Leuchtkugeln [ Fire-Balls ]. In 1887 he wrote his Antisemiten- 
Katechismus and a long pamphlet series entided Brennende Fragen 
[Burning Questions \. His first anti-Semitic organization was th e Leipziger 
Reformverein (est. 1884), for which he issued a periodical, Antisemitische 
Correspondent, from 1885. In June 1889 at Bochum, an anti-Semitic 
conference, attended by many representatives from France, Hungary, 
Germany and Austria, including Georg von Schonerer, led to the 
establishment of two German anti-Semitic parliamentary parties, the 
Deutsch-Soziale Partei under the leadership of Max Liebermann von 
Sonnenberg, and the Antisemitische Volkspartei, led by the peasant- 
rousing demagogue Otto Bockel. 3 

Fritsch did not offer himself as a candidate for these parties because 
he was convinced that anti-Semitism could not succeed as a political 
force in parliament. His conviction in the ineffectiveness of parliamen- 
tary anti-Semitism proved to be correct. When more than one party 
existed after the Bochum conference, their competition led to a 
reduction in the number of successful anti-Semitic candidates at the 
Reichstag elections. But coalitions led to other problems. After the two 
parties merged in 1 894 as the Deutsch-Soziale Reformpartei, the desire for 
parliamentary co-operation and convergence caused such moderation 
in the manifesto as to lead to a marked reduction of emphasis on anti- 
Semitism in favour of an appeal to more conservative and middle- 
class economic interests. By 1903 the anti-Semites in parliament had 
been all but absorbed by the Conservative government and were 
increasingly dependent on agreements with such extra- parliamentary 
bodies as the Agrarian League and the German Nationalist Commercial 
Employees’ Association. The Deutsch-Soziale Reformpartei secured only 
six seats in the elections of 1907 and a mere three in 1912. 

Fritsch denounced the Jews as racial aliens. In his Zur Bekampfung 
zweitausendjahriger Irrthiimer [Contesting the Falsehoods of Two Thousand 
Years } (1886), he stressed ‘Aryandom’ and its relation to Germanic 
traditions within a pagan context. Fritsch wanted a reorganization of 
the intellectual, economic, social, and political life of the nation in 
whichjews had no place. This development in Fritsch’s thought found 
its reflection in the publication of more ‘scientific’ studies of race 
towards the end of the 1890s. While Arthur de Gobineau (1816-82) 
had written a cameo of racial evolution and decline, concluding that 



124 




THE GERMANENORDEN 

the Aryans were destined to extinction beneath the ocean of black 
and yellow races, Vacher de Lapouge (1854-1936) and Houston 
Stewart Chamberlain (1855-1927) wrote under the influence of the 
new zoological and biological sciences and introduced the Jews as the 
race most detrimental to Aryan racial supremacy. Unlike Gobineau, 
with his reliance upon linguistics as the standard of racial distinction, 
these later racist writers were interested in skull measurements and 
other physical characteristics such as hair and eye colouring. 

Fritsch wanted to establish a broad and powerful anti-Semitic 
movement outside parliament, where it would be most effective. In 
October 1901 he sent a circular to some three hundred individuals 
who had earlier been active party anti-Semites. The response was 
disappointing, but in January 1902 he founded th c Hammer, initially a 
monthly, later a fortnightly periodical, which was to act as a crystal- 
lization point of the new movement. In 1905 the Hammer readers, then 
numbering more than three thousand persons, began organizing 
themselves into local Hammer- Gemeinden (Hammer- Groups). The mem- 
bers of these groups came largely from the declining Jugendbund- 
bewegung (Youth League Movement) and the German Nationalist 
Commercial Employees’ Association (DHV). 4 In 1908 these groups 
used the name Deutsche Emeuerungs-Gemeinde (German Renewal 
Groups): their membership was interested in anti-capitalist forms of 
land reform designed to invigorate the peasantry, the garden city 
movement, and Lebensreform . 5 This spontaneous local organization 
was actively encouraged by Fritsch. In 1904 his collaborator, Paul 
Forster, had published an appeal for a volkisch general staff to 
spearhead a nationalist-racist revival of Germany and so unite the 
many groups and leagues which sought to establish more German 
colonies overseas, to build a mightier navy to compete with England, 
and generally to enhance the international prestige of the German 
Reich under Hohenzollern rule, while ‘cleansing’ the nation of 
allegedly insidious social agents at home, principally identified as the 
Socialists, the Jews, and any other opponents of belligerent German 
imperialism. 6 

In March 1912 Fritsch recalled the weakness of the earlier anti- 
Semitic political parties and demanded a new anti-Semitic organization 
‘above the parties’. 7 The year 1912 was crucial for those individuals 
who were worried at the state of the nation. The second Moroccan 
crisis of July 1911, when the government sent a gunboat to Agadir to 
put pressure on the French to guarantee the German iron interests in 
West Morocco and to cede parts of the French Congo to Germany, had 



125 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



demonstrated that German colonialism was still hampered by the 
French and the British. This imperial disappointment was compounded 
by a domestic shock at the Reichstag elections of J anuary 1912, when 
the Social Democratic Party won 110 seats, a large gain on its former 
43 seats. The foremost losers of the elections were the Conservatives 
and anti-Semites, who retained only 68 of the 109 seats they had held 
in the parliament of 1907. These alarming events stirred Heinrich 
Class, the anti-Semitic chairman of the Alldeutscher Verband (Pan- 
German League) to publish a political manifesto, Wenn ich der Kaiser 
war! [If I were Kaiser /] (1912), in which he appealed for a dictatorship 
and the suspension of parliament and denounced the J ews in a violent 
diatribe. Fritsch reviewed the book in the Hammer and recommended 
his readers to act immediately. 8 At a meeting at his Leipzig home on 
24/25 May 1912 Fritsch and some twenty prominent Pan-Germans 
and anti-Semites formally founded two groups to indoctrinate German 
society. 9 Karl August Hellwig, a retired colonel living at Kassel and a 
List Society member since March 1 908, headed the Reichshammerbund, 
a confederation of all existing Hammer groups; Hermann Pohl, a 
sealer of weights and measures at Magdeburg, became the chief officer 
of the Germanenorden, a secret twin organization. 

The influence of List’s ideas was evident in the first of these 
organizations. Hellwig had already drafted a constitution for the 
Reichshammerbund in February 1912. The executive body was 
formed by the Bundeswart, an office occupied by Hellwig, the 
Ehrenbundeswart, an honorary office held by Theodor Fritsch, and an 
Anmanen-Rat of the twelve members. This latter appellation indicates 
Hellwig’s Listian inspiration. Prospective members of the Reichs- 
hammerbund were obliged to guarantee their Aryan blood and that of 
their spouses, while leaflets formed the principal weapon in the 
struggle against thejews. A set of guidelines followed in April 1912, 
which urged collaboration with Catholics and a broad spread of 
propaganda amongst workers, farmers, teachers, civil servants and 
officers of the armed forces, with particular efforts amongst the 
students at universities. 10 The correspondence of Julius Ruttinger, 
head of the Reichshammerbund branch in Nuremberg, reflects the 
slow progress of the organization and a persistent trend towards 
internal disputes and petty concerns. At the end of 1912, the 
Nuremberg group reported a total membership of twenty-three 
persons, of which only ten attended meetings on average, and a 
balance of 5.58 marks from a total annual income of 94.64 marks. 1 1 By 
June 1913 only nineteen branches of the Reichshammerbund existed 



126 




THE GERMANENORDEN 

throughout Germany, of which the liveliest appears to have been in 
Hamburg. Despite thousands of leaflets and determined canvassing, 
the league could claim no more than a few hundred members. 

The history of the Germanenorden is both more complex and 
involved with List’s ideas. The notion of an anti-Semitic group 
organized like a secret quasi-masonic lodge appears to have arisen 
amongst volkisch activists around 1910. Some anti-Semites were 
convinced that the powerful influence of Jews in German public life 
could be understood only as the result of a widespread Jewish secret 
conspiracy; it was supposed that such a conspiracy could best be 
combatted by a similar anti-Semitic organization. 12 In spring 1910 
Philipp Stauff, a prominent volkisch journalist, mentioned in his 
correspondence the idea of an anti-Semitic lodge with the names of 
members kept secret to prevent enemy penetration. 13 The following 
year Johannes Hering, who belonged to the local Hammer group in 
Munich as well as the Alldeutscher Verband, and who was friendly with 
both List and Lanz von Liebenfels wrote to Stauff about Freemasonry. 
Hering stated that he had been a Freemason since 1894, but that this 
‘ancient Germanic institution’ had been polluted by Jewish and 
parvenu ideas; he concluded that a revived Aryan lodge would be a 
boon to anti-Semites. 14 

In late 1911 Hermann Pohl sent a circular on this subject to some 
fifty' potential anti-Semitic collaborators. Pohl stated that the Hammer 
group in Magdeburg had already formed a lodge upon appropriate 
racial principles with a ritual based on Germanic pagan tradition. He 
enthused about the use of lodge ceremony for anti-Semitic organi- 
zations: the solemnity, the mysterious effects, and the hierarchical 
discipline produced a unanimity that was rare among small volkisch 
groups. Pohl urged his correspondents to join his movement and 
form lodges of their own, adding that this project had the full support 
of Theodor Fritsch. 15 The origins of this Magdeburg lodge are 
documented in an inaccurate polemic against Pohl in late 1918. 
According to this source the Hammer group was established in 
Magdeburg in autumn 1910, and a certain Heinnatz wished to found 
an inner core of members in the form of a lodge. The membership 
consulted Fritsch, who replied that this idea had already been mooted 
by other Hammer groups. The Wotan lodge was accordingly instituted 
on 5 April 1911, with Hermann Pohl elected Master. On 15 April a 
Grand Lodge was founded with Theodor Fritsch as Grand Master, but 
the work of formulating rules and rituals was undertaken by the Wotan 
lodge. On 12 March 1912 the organization adopted the name 



127 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Germanenorden upon the suggestion of Fritsch. 16 

The year 1912 witnessed the rapid establishment of Germanenorden 
lodges throughout Northern and Eastern Germany. In January Pohl 
wrote a manifesto for the ‘loyal lodges’, which indicated his desire 
for a fervent rather than numerous following, which would usher in an 
‘Aryan- Germanic religious revival’ stressing obedience and devotion 
to the cause of a pan-German ‘Armanist Empire’ (Armanenreich). He 
called for the rebirth of a racially pure German nation in which the 
‘parasitic and revolutionary mob-races (Jews, anarchist cross-breeds 
and gipsies)’ would be deported. 17 Pohl issued the first Germanenorden 
newsletter that July in which he recorded that lodges had been 
ceremonially founded at Breslau, Dresden, and Konigsberg in the 
spring, while lodges at Berlin and Hamburg had been already 
working prior to this time. Brothers in Bromberg, Nuremberg, 
Thuringia, and Diisseldorf were recruiting with a view to constituting 
themselves as lodges in the near future. The total roll of brothers at this 
time numbered 140 and by December 1912 the Germanenorden 
numbered 316 brothers distributed as follows: Breslau 99, Dresden 
100, Konigsberg 42, Hamburg 27, Berlin 30 and Hanover 18. 18 In the 
following January a lodge was established at Duisburg with 30 
brothers. Pohl now dropped the title ‘Secretary’ and styled himself 
‘Chancellor’ of the Order.' 1 ' Lodges were established in Nuremberg 
and Munich in the course of 1913 but the success of these southern 
provinces of the Order was limited in comparison with those in 
Northern and Eastern Germany. 20 A Reichshammerbund group was 
founded at Munich in spring 1 9 1 4 by Wilhelm Rohmeder, chairman 
of the Deutscher Schulverein and a member of the List Society since 1908. 
There was much duplication of membership between the two 
organizations. 21 

This history of the early Germanenorden must be supplemented by 
an account of its aims, rules, and rituals. According to a circular of the 
Franconian province, the principal aim of the Germanenorden was 
the monitoring of the Jews and their activities by the creation of a 
centre to which all anti-Semitic material would flow for distribution. 
Subsidiary aims included the mutual aid of brothers in respect of 
business introductions, contracts, and finance. Lastly, all brothers 
were committed to the circulation of volkisch journals, especially the 
Hammer, their ‘sharpest weapon against Jewry and other enemies of 
the people’. 22 The articles of the Germanenorden betray an overt 
ariosophical influence. All nationals, male or female, of flawless 
Germanic descent were eligible for admission to the Order. Application 



128 




THE GERMANENORDEN 



forms requested details about the colour of the applicant’s hair, eyes, 
and skin. 25 The ideal coloration was blond to dark blond hair, blue to 
light brown eyes, and pale skin. Further details regarding the personal 
pardculars of the applicant’s parents and grandparents, and in the 
case of married applicants, those of the spouse were also required. 24 

A guide to recruitment ruled that physically handicapped and 
‘unpleasant looking’ persons were barred from admission and referred 
the prospective candidate to those Ostara numbers devoted to racial 
somatology published between 1908 and 1913. 25 A Germanenorden 
newsletter related that the articles of the Order had been formulated 
after discussions with Karl August Hellwig of the Armanenschaft. The 
ritual was also ascribed to Armanenschaft ceremony, but the suggestion 
that brothers of the higher grades in the Germanenorden be called 
Armanen was vetoed by the Armanenschaft. These statements imply that 
Hellwig was in touch with a contemporary body called the Armanenschaft, 
which can be identified either as the Armanen-Rat of the Reichs- 
hammerbund or the HAO, the chief German representative of which 
was Philipp Stauff at Berlin. 26 

The emblems of the Germanenorden indicate a further source of 
ariosophical inspiration. From the middle of 1916 the official Order 
newsletter, the Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten , began to display on its 
front cover a curved- armed swastika superimposed upon a cross ^ P 
In due course advertisements for volkisch jewellery, rings, pendants 
and tie-pins, incorporating various runes and the swastika, appeared 
in this publication. The supplying firm, Haus Eckloh of Liidenscheid 
in Westphalia, worked from designs submitted by members of the List 
Society during the war. 28 Although the swastika was current among 
several contemporary volkisch associations in Germany, it was through 
the Germanenorden and the Thule Society, its successor organization 
in post-war Munich, that this device came to be adopted by the 
National Socialists. 29 

The ceremony and ritual of the Germanenorden demonstrate its 
strange synthesis of racist, masonic, and Wagnerian inspiration. A 
summons to an initiation ceremony of the Berlin province on 1 1 
January 1914 informed brothers that this was a frock-coat and white- 
tie affair and that any new candidates would have to submit to racial 
tests by the Berlin phrenologist, Robert Burger-Villingen, who had 
devised the ‘plastometer’, his own instrument for determining the 
relative Aryan purity of a subject by means of cranial measurements. 30 
A surviving ritual document of c. 1912 describes the initiation of 
novices into the lowest grade of the Order. While the novices waited in 



129 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

an adjoining room, the brothers assembled in the ceremonial room of 
the lodge. The Master took his place at the front of the room beneath 
the baldachin flanked on either side by two Knights wearing white 
robes and helmets adorned with horns and leaning on their swords. In 
front of these sat the Treasurer and Secretary wearing white masonic 
sashes, while the Herald took up his position in the centre of the room. 
At the back of the room in the grove of the Grail stood the Bard in a 
white gown, before him the Master of Ceremonies in a blue gown, 
while the other lodge brothers stood in a semicircle around him as far 
as the tables of the Treasurer and Secretary. Behind the grove of the 
Grail was a music room where a harmonium and piano were 
accompanied by a small choir of ‘forest elves’. 

The ceremony began with soft harmonium music, while the 
brothers sang the Pilgrims’ Chorus from Wagner’s Tannhauser. The 
ritual commenced in candlelight with brothers making the sign of the 
swastika rjj and the Master reciprocating. Then the blindfolded 
novices, clad in pilgrimage mantles, were ushered by the Master of 
Ceremonies into the room. Here the Master told them of the Order’s 
Ario- Germanic and aristocratic Weltanschauung , before the Bard lit the 
sacred flame in the grove and the novices were divested of their 
mantles and blindfolds. At this point the Master seized Wotan’s spear 
and held it before him, while the two Knights crossed their swords 
upon it. A series of calls and responses, accompanied by music from 
Lohengrin , completed the oath of the novices. Their consecration 
followed with cries from the ‘forest elves’ as the new brothers were led 
into the grove of the Grail around the Bard’s sacred flame. 31 With the 
ritual personifying lodge officers as archetypal figures in Germanic 
mythology, this ceremonial must have exercised a potent influence on 
the candidates. 

The war threw the Germanenorden into confusion when many 
brothers joined up. Julius Riittinger, the Master of the Franconian 
province, went early to the front. Hermann Pohl wrote to him in 
November 1914 that finance had become a serious problem with 
nearly half the brethren of the nation serving in the armed forces: ‘the 
war came upon us too soon, the Germanenorden was not yet properly 
organized and crystallized, and if the war lasts much longer, the Order 
will go to pieces. A great number of brothers have already been killed 
in action.’ 32 Despite Pohl’s concern for the survival of the Order, 
several prominent brothers were unimpressed by his leadership. In 
July 1914 the Master of the Leipzig lodge had politely proposed that 
Pohl retire, while in 1915 members of the Berlin lodge attempted a 



130 




THE GERMANENORDEN 



separatist schism. 33 In late 1915 Topfer, Riittinger’s successor at 
Nuremberg, wrote that brothers were now weary of the ritual, 
ceremony and banquets, which Pohl regarded as the main purpose of 
the Order. 34 

Matters came to a head at a Thuringian province meeting held at 
Gotha on 8 October 1916, attended both by Thuringian brethren and 
those of neighbouring provinces. 35 The Berlin brothers urged the 
Gotha assembly to relieve Pohl of his office as Chancellor. Incensed by 
this thankless response to his unstinting efforts on behalf of the Order 
since 1911, Pohl immediately declared himself Chancellor of a 
schismatic Germanenorden Walvater of the Holy Grail, which suc- 
ceeded in carrying with it the already established lodges in the 
provinces of Silesia (Breslau), Hamburg, Berlin, and the Osterland 
(Gera). Pohl’s supporters at Berlin were G. W. Freese and Braunlich, 
who founded new Berlin lodges in the city and at Gross-Lichterfelde. 36 
The original Order was subsequently headed by Generalmajor Emin 
von Heimerdinger (b. 1856) as Chancellor, Dr Gensch as Treasurer, 
and Bernhard Koemer as Grand Keeper of Pedigrees ( Grosssippenwahrer ), 
an office in line with his genealogical and heraldic interests. Strict 
secrecy was still demanded in all Order correspondence and these 
officers at Berlin stated that they would henceforth be known only 
anonymously by the runes , P and^C . Philipp Stauff and Eberhard 
von Brockhusen were also mentioned as principal officers in the 
loyalist Berlin province. 37 

This new focus of loyalist Order activities in Berlin may have been 
due to the efforts of Philipp Stauff. Born on 26 March 1876 at 
Moosbach, Stauff had gained experience as a journalist before 
publishing his own nationalist newspaper Wegweiser und Wegwarte at 
Enzisweiler on Lake Constance from 1907. By 1910 he had moved to 
Kulmbach in Franconia, where he assumed the editorship of another 
newspaper in the same vein. Stauff was intent on founding an 
association of volkisch authors, an ambition realized in late 1910 after 
he had canvassed some hundred prominent nationalist, racist and 
anti-Semitic writers, including Adolf Bartels, Ludwig Wilser, J ohannes 
Hering and Lanz von Liebenfels. In early 1912 Stauff moved to Berlin 
where he continued his volkisch publishing. He published a directory 
of contemporary pan-German and anti-Semitic groups as Das deutsche 
Wehrbuch [The German Defence Book ] (1912) and, on behalf of Heinrich 
Kraeger, who with Alfred Brunner founded the Deutsch-Sozialistische 
Partei in 1918, he issued the Semi- Gotha and Semi- Alliancen, genealogical 
handbooks which purported to identify Jews amongst the German 



131 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

aristocracy. This project was not intended to discredit the nobility but 
to assist the ‘cleansing’ process inherent in so much anti-Semitic 
psychology. These handbooks appeared in serial form between 1912 
and 1914 and involved Stauff in a legal suit. 38 A similar handbook, the 
Semi-Kurschner, modelled on Kiirschner’s German Literary Calendar, 
listed Jews active in public life as authors, actors, bankers, officers, 
doctors and lawyers, and involved Stauff in a stormy correspondence 
of denials and protests throughout 1914. 39 

Stauff had become a List Society member at Kulmbach in 1910, 
swiftly graduating to the intimate circle around the Master. He was 
among the pilgrims who travelled to Vienna in June 1911 to 
participate in the HAO celebrations and rambles to sites of Armanist 
association. In 1912 Stauff became a committee member of the 
Society and a generous patron. His esoteric treatise Runenhauser [Rune 
Houses ] (1912) extended the Listian thesis of ‘armanist’ relics with the 
claim that the ancient runic wisdom had been enshrined in the 
geometric configuration of beams in half-timbered houses throughout 
Germany. In early 1913 Stauff was involved in a series of spiritualist 
seances which claimed to have communicated with long dead priest- 
kings of the old religion. 40 Documentary evidence exists to suggest 
that Stauff was also close to the Ordo Novi Templi before the war. 41 

Confusion reigned in Order affairs after the schism of 1916. Pohl 
had retained the stamps and stationery of the old Order so that he 
could issue circulars and newsletters in the name of the loyalist Order, 
a practice that led many aspirant candidates of the loyalist lodges to his 
group. Members of the two Orders became convinced that the Order 
had been dissolved, so great was the confusion. Bernhard Koerner, 
who had been serving as a cavalry captain in France since 1915, wrote 
to List in January 1917 that the Germanenorden had now become 
extinct. Despite the dispatch of authoritative circulars, the lodge 
officers were quite out of touch with Order affairs by this stage. 42 

After the armistice in November 1918 former brothers of the 
loyalist Germanenorden set about its revival. The Grand Master, 
Eberhard von Brockhusen ( 1869-1939), was a Brandenburg landowner 
and a generous List Society patron. He was rather preoccupied with 
the revolt of Polish labourers on his estates, and complained that 
Order administration was chaotic owing to the lack of a constitution; 
in early 1919 he asked Erwin von Heimerdinger to relieve him of his 
office. 43 Although Stauff informed Brockhusen that his resignation 
had been accepted at the beginning of March, the affair seemed to 
drag on as Brockhusen was still pleading for a constitutional reform in 



132 




THE GERMANENORDEN 



the summer, and accusing Stauff of slander. Brockhusen’s corres- 
pondence reveals a deep dismay at post-war conditions and a hatred 
of the Poles. 44 In the late summer Heimerdinger abdicated the 
Chancellorship in favour of the Grand Duke Johann Albrecht of 
Mecklenburg, who was very enthusiastic about the Order and the 
Free Corps expedition to the Baltic countries in 1 9 1 9. The Order soon 
lost this prominent patron when he died of a heart attack on 6 
February 1920. 45 Brockhusen remained in office and finally got his 
constitution accepted in 1921, which provided for an extraordinarily 
complex organization of grades, rings, and provincial ‘citadels’ 
(. Burgen ) supposed to generate secrecy for a nationwide system of local 
groups having many links with militant volkisch associations, including 
the Deutschvolkischer Schutz- und Trutzbund , 46 

Despite the petty and futile debates of its senior officers in Berlin, 
the Germanenorden provinces initiated clandestine activities involving 
the assassination of public figures associated with the new German 
Republic, the loathsome symbol of defeat and disgrace to radical 
nationalists. The Germanenorden was used as a cover-organization 
for the recruitment of political assassins in 1921. The murderers of 
Matthias Erzberger, the former Reich Finance Minister and the hated 
signatory of the armistice, were Heinrich Schulz and Heinrich 
Tillessen, who had been strongly influenced by volkisch propaganda 
after demobilization at the end of the war. They had settled in June 
1 920 in Regensburg, where they met Lorenz Mesch, the local leader of 
the Germanenorden. In May 1921 Schulz and Tillessen went to 
Munich where they received their orders to kill Erzberger from a 
person who claimed to have the authority of the Germanenorden. The 
attempted assassination of Maximilian Harden, the republican author, 
was also traced to the Order. The impressive secrecy and ideology of 
the Order thus inspired volkisch fanatics to murder the Jewish and 
republican enemies of the German nation in a modern ‘Vehm’. 47 

After 1921 the loyalist Germanenorden became a single group 
among the numerous right-wing and anti-Semitic organizations 
claiming the support of disgrunded and revanchist Germans in the 
Weimar Republic. For the story of Germanenorden influence on 
Nazism one must return to Hermann Pohl and his Germanenorden 
Walvater, which first attracted the interest of Rudolf von Sebottendorff 
in late 1916. Sebottendorff joined the schismatic order and revived its 
Bavarian province in Munich at Christmas 1917, thus laying the basis 
of an important volkisch organization which witnessed the birth of the 
National Socialist Party. Without this man it is likely that both the 



133 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Germanenorden and Ariosophy would have been condemned to 
oblivion. 



134 




11 



Rudolf von Sebottendorff 
and the Thule Society 



SEBOTTENDORFF first became involved in German volkisch activities 
at a late stage of the war, but his early life is still important. Compared 
to most volkisch agitators in imperial Germany, Sebottendorff seems a 
cosmopolitan adventurer. His penchant for shady deeds and espionage 
led him into subterfuges which also earned him the reputation of a 
trickster. The son of a working-class Prussian family, Sebottendorff 
made an early break with his background by going to sea and working 
in the Middle East. A study of his early movements enables one to 
understand better those experiences which fashioned his attitudes 
and otherwise equipped him to play his not insignificant part in the 
counter-revolutionary operations at Munich in 1918 and 1919.* 
The man who called himself Baron Rudolf von Sebottendorff was, 
in common with the Ariosophists he admired, no more than a self- 
styled aristocrat. Hewas bornon9 November 1875 at Hoyerswerda, a 
Saxon market town lying on the Lausitz Heath north-east of Dresden, 
the son of Ernst Rudolf Glauer, a locomotive driver, and his wife 
Chrisdane Henriette, nee Muller. He was christened Adam Alfred 
Rudolf Glauer. 1 According to his semi- fictional autobiography, the 
Glauer family was descended on the male side from a French soldier, 



* Before examining his life before this period, a note on sources is in order. Besides 
official documents relating to birth, marriage and residence, all accounts of his life 
date from 1918 onwards. In addition to a brief biographical sketch in Ernst Tiede’s 
Astrologisches Lexikon (1922), there exist two semi-autobiographical novels, Erwin Haller 
(1918-1919) and Der Talisman des Rosenkreuzers [The Rosicrucian’s Talisman] (1925). 
Although these works contain much imaginary material, their mention of specific 
dates and events, certain of which are both very local and confirmed by independent 
sources, justifies their treatment with caution as historical aids. For this documentation 
of Sebottendorff’ s early life I am indebted to Ellic Howe’s unpublished typescript 
‘Rudolph Freiherr von Sebottendorff’ (1968), a copy of which is deposited in the 
Institut fur Zeitgeschichte, Munich. 



135 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Lieutenant Torre (178 9- 1821), who had been stranded after the Battle 
of Katzbach (1813) at the village of Alzenau (Olszanica), about 18 
kilometres north-east of Lowenberg (Lwowek Slaski) in Prussian 
Silesia. This Frenchman was the alleged great-grandfather of Rudolf 
Glauer. Torre married a local farmer’s daughter who gave birth to a 
son in 1818, who himself married in 1845 and was killed in the street 
fighting at Berlin during the 1 848 revolution. As natives of Silesia the 
family were strongly pro-Prussian in their political affiliations: the 
name Torre was probably changed to Glauer for this reason. Ernst 
Rudolf Glauer was born about 1846 and served in both the Austro- 
Prussian campaign of 1866 and the Franco-Prussian War. Following 
his discharge from the army in 1871 he took up his appointment as a 
railwayman at Hoyerswerda. He died in June 1893, leaving his 
orphaned son sufficient funds to complete his secondary schooling 
and commence study in engineering. 2 

While the biographical details in Tiede state that young Glauer 
attended the Ilmenau Technical School, the autobiography indicates 
an earlier period of practical training with the engineering firm ofj. E. 
Christoph at Niesky. 3 We next encounter Glauer staying with old 
friends at the inn in Koblenz near Hoyerswerda over the Christmas 
break of his second semester at the Berlin-Charlottenburg Polytechnic. 
He mentioned that he had not seen these friends for two years. If one 
takes 1893 (the year of his father’s death) as an initial date in the 
account, this brings one to Christmas 1896, a few weeks after his 
twenty-first birthday. There is also a reference to the necessity of a visit 
to Hoyerswerda in connection with his recent coming of age. 4 Glauer 
remained in Berlin until the end of the summer semester, reporting 
then for his year’s military service in the navy on 1 October 1897. 
Rejected on grounds of a tendency to hernia, Glauer tutored privately 
in Hanover until March 1898. However, he had to abandon his post 
after accompanying his pupils’ mother on an illicit journey which took 
them to Nice, Monte Carlo, Genoa, and Lucerne. 5 

Having failed to complete his studies, Glauer could not hope to 
secure a qualified post in Germany. Like many young contemporaries, 
Glauer felt confined in his homeland and decided to go to sea. After 
signing on as a stoker for six months, Glauer sailed in the H.H. Meier 
(5 1 40 tons) on 2 April 1 898 from Bremerhaven to New York, returning 
to Bremerhaven on 3 May. 6 He subsequently found work on the S.S. 
Ems (4912 tons) in September 1899. While this steamerwas docked in 
Naples on its way to New York, Glauer was informed of a vacancy for 
an electrician on board the S.S. Prinz Regent Luitpold (6288 tons). 



136 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

Since this vessel was on its maiden voyage to Sydney, Glauer decided 
to seize this chance to visit Australia. He was taken off the Ems and, 
after a few days’ waiting, sailed from Naples in the Prinz Regent 
Luitpold on 15 February 1900. 7 During the voyage Glauer was 
persuaded by another seaman to desert ship and try their luck 
prospecting for gold in Western Australia. After docking at Freemande 
on 13 March, Glauer and his friend travelled via Southern Cross and 
Coolgardie to their concession in the North Coolgardie Goldfield on 
the eastern edge of the Great Victoria Desert. The venture was doomed 
by the death of the friend in June. Glauer returned to Freemantle to 
embark for Egypt, where he had an introduction given him by a Parsee 
at Coolgardie. 8 Thus ended Glauer’s time at sea, a period marked by 
foreign adventure, youthful ambition, and technical experience in 
large modern steamships. 

Arriving at Alexandria in July 1900, Glauer travelled directly to 
Cairo to meet Hussein Pasha, an influential Turkish landowner who 
was in the service of the Khedive Abbas Hilmi. According to Tiede, 
Glauerworked in the service of the Khedive as a technician from 1897 
to 1900; according to Der Talisman des Rosenkreuzers , Glauer spent less 
than a month in Cairo before travelling on to Constantinople, as 
Hussein Pasha spent the summers in Turkey at his house on the Asian 
shore of the Bosporus.' 7 In the absence of further evidence, it seems 
likely that Glauer spent sufficient time in Egypt to gain some 
impression of its people and culture. Although still paying substantial 
tribute to the Ottoman Sultan, Egypt had become a prosperous 
country by the late 1890s under the successful Anglo-Egyptian 
condominium, established in 1882 to safeguard the stability of the 
country and the power of the Khedive against the revolts of factions 
which had earlier misgoverned the economy for their own benefit. Sir 
Evelyn Baring, who served as British consul-general, wrote in 1901 
that ‘the foundations on which the well-being and material prosperity 
of a civilized community should rest have been laid . . . the institution of 
slavery is virtually defunct. The corvee (labour done in lieu of taxes by 
vassals) has been practically abolished.’ But this progress had not been 
without cost. Here Glauer gained his first impressions of a developing 
country and saw the problems arising from westernization and religious 
or nationalist reaction. 

At the end of July 1900 Glauer sailed the thousand mile voyage 
from Alexandria to Constantinople via Piraeus and Izmir. On his 
arrival at the Golden Horn he was taken by caique up the Bosporus to 
the country home of Hussein Pasha at Qubuklu near Beykoz. 



137 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Although still intending to return home to resume his studies, Glauer 
was so enchanted by the country, its customs, and his gracious host 
that he decided to stay on. After learningT urkish from the imam of the 
Beykoz mosque, and familiarizing himself with the manners of the 
people through frequent visits to Stamboul, Glauer agreed to work 
from October 1 900 for a year as surveyor on the Anatolian estates of 
Hussein near Bandirma and at Yenikioy near Bursa. Here there was a 
large area on the slopes of Mount Olympus, which Hussein was 
settling with Turkish returnees from the former Ottoman provinces of 
Bulgaria. Glauer made plans to build modest houses to replace the 
primitive huts already there. A small brick-making plant and a saw- 
mill were organized. There were also plans to plant mulberry trees for 
silkworm breeding and hazel trees for the European chocolate 
industry. A contract with the firm of Nesde was struck and a road was 
laid from the village to Bursa. 10 

Besides gaining further technical and managerial experience in 
Turkey, Glauer began a serious study of occultism. An interest in 
exotic religion had already been kindled when he saw the Mevlevi sect 
of whirling dervishes and visited the Cheops Pyramid at El-GTza in 
July 1900. His companion Ibrahim had told him of the cosmological 
and numerologica' significance of the pyramids and aroused Glauer’s 
curiosity about the occult gnosis of ancient theocracies. 11 Hussein 
Pasha, his wealthy and learned host, practised a form of Sufism and 
discussed these matters with Glauer. At Bursa he made the acquaintance 
of the Termudi family, who were Greek Jews from Salonica. Old 
Termudi had retired from business to devote himself to a study of the 
Cabbala and collecting alchemical and Rosicrucian texts, while his 
eldest son Abraham managed their bank at Bursa and a younger 
brother ran a branch establishment at Salonica. Apart from the 
banking business the Termudi family also traded in silkworm cocoons 
and raw silk. The Termudis were Freemasons in a lodge that may have 
been affiliated to the French Rite of Memphis, which had spread in the 
Levant and the Middle East. Glauer was initiated into the lodge by old 
Termudi and subsequently inherited his occult library. 12 In one of 
these books Glauer discovered a note from Hussein Pasha, describing 
the secret mystical exercises of traditional Islamic alchemists, still 
practised by the BaktashI sect of dervishes. 13 When Glauer returned 
to Turkey in 1908, he continued to study Islamic mysticism, which 
in his opinion shared a common Aryan source with the Germanic 
runes. 

The account in Der Talisman des Rosenkreuzers implies that Glauer 



138 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

remained at the Yenikioy estate until 1 908, moving then to Constantin- 
ople, but official documents suggest otherwise. He is recorded as 
resident in Munich from September 1902 until April 1903, when he 
left for Probstzella, a small village in Thuringia. He stated that he was a 
fitter by trade. 14 A further record also places him in Germany after 
1901. At Dresden on 25 March 1905 Glauer married Klara Voss, a 
Saxon farmer’s daughter from Bischofswerda. But the marriage broke 
down and the couple obtained a divorce in Berlin on 5 May 1907. 15 
Years later a newspaper reported that Glauer had appeared in court at 
Berlin, charged with forgery and other deceptions. 16 Glauer may have 
been obliquely referring to this incident, when he described how he 
had pondered upon a dilemma in the Freiburg minster during 1 908 — 
perhaps this clash with the authorities and the decision to leave 
Germany. 17 

By the end of 1908 Glauer was in Constantinople. The story of Encin 
Haller (1918-19) describes a train journey in September from Breslau 
to Constanta, whence he sailed by Romanian vessel to the capital. This 
account implies that Haller/Glauer had been attracted by the 
economic prospects arising from the Young Turk revolution of July 
1 908, which had established a constitutional monarchy and the rule of 
parliament. At Constantinople he made several Swiss and German 
contacts involved in the import trade and German-financed projects 
including the Baghdad railway, but he could not find employment 
himself. He finally chanced upon a temporary teaching job at a colony 
of Kievan Jews on the slopes of the Alem Dag, about 30 kilometres 
from Scutari (Uskiidar). He returned to Constantinople at Easter 1 909 
and witnessed the reactionary counter-revolution of Sultan Abdul- 
Hamid II, who had been deposed the preceding summer. After 
several days of bloody fighting the Young Turks re-established their 
authority and exiled the Sultan. Here it is worth mentioning that the 
masonic lodge, which Glauer had joined at Bursa in 1901, may have 
been a local cadre of the pre-revolutionary Secret Society of Union and 
Progress, founded on the model of Freemasonry by Salonican Turks 
to generate liberal consciousness during the repressive reign of the 
Sultan. 18 

Given Glauer’s alleged interest in the westernization ofTurkey, it is 
hard to account for his obscurantist and reactionary political attitudes 
during the collapse of the old order and the revolution in Germany. 
Glauer is supposed to have given lectures on esoteric subjects at his 
apartment in the Pera (Beyoglu) district of Constantinople, subsequendy 
founding a mystical lodge in December 1910. At this time he was 



139 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

writing a study of the BaktashI dervishes, an antinomian mystical 
order widely spread and influential in Turkey and connected by 
legend with the origin of the Janissaries, the medieval instrument of 
pan-Ottoman dominion in the Balkans. A link between the BaktashI 
order and European Freemasonry has also been alleged. 19 Glauer’s 
political views were primarily inspired by a religious orientation: the 
anti-materialism of pan-Ottoman mysticism, alchemy, and Rosi- 
crucianism, combined with a post-war hatred of Bolshevism, which he 
identified as the acme of materialism, led him to embrace anti- 
democratic ideas. His politics find an historical parallel in the support 
of King Frederick William II for the Gold- und Rosenkreuzer Orden, which 
opposed the rational and modernizing forces of the Enlightenment 
with its mystical irrationalism in Prussia during the 1780s. 20 

This complex of politico-religious attitudes may also account for 
Glauer’s fantasy of aristocratic origins. His adoption of the name and 
title ‘von Sebottendorff von der Rose’ deserves detailed examination, 
as does the genealogy of the family, for any light it can throw on the 
cloudy issue. According to one explanation, Glauer claimed that he 
was naturalized as a Turkish citizen in 1911 and subsequently 
adopted by an expatriate Baron Heinrich von Sebottendorff under 
Turkish law. Since this act was not recognized in Germany, the new 
Rudolf von Sebottendorff had the adoption repeated by Siegmund 
von Sebottendorff von der Rose (1843-1915) at Wiesbaden in 1914 
and later for good measure by his widow Maria at Baden-Baden. 21 In 
another declaration, Glauer claimed that he had been naturalized and 
adopted by an American of this name at Constantinople in 1908. 22 
Although the adoption would have been valid only with the express 
permission of the Kaiser, Glauer’s claimed relationship with the 
Sebottendorffs was endorsed by the family. Rudolf Freiherr von 
Sebottendorff and his second wife, Freifrau Anna, were described as 
mourning cousins in the funerary notice of Siegmund. 23 

The Sebottendorff family were originally lords of several villages on 
the Baltic coast during the early Middle Ages. An ancestor served as a 
diplomat to Emperor Otto II (d. 983), from whom he received the 
dignity of imperial knight and a coat-of-arms showing a root of 
cinnamon. By the end of the twelfth century the Balt family had 
migrated south to Silesia, an area of predominant Slav settlement then 
being colonized by German knights and peasants. From the thirteenth 
to the sixteenth century the family flourished in at least four lines and 
achieved eminent office in the service of the Empire. By the eighteenth 
century two lines were still extant. Carl Moritz von Sebottendorff 



140 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

(1698-1760), the head of the von der Rose line, moved south to 
Austria. Almost all his male descendants served in the Habsburg 
army, residing variously in Vienna, Linz, and Brno; the remaining 
Lortzendorff line occupied posts in the Prussian army, since Silesia 
had passed from Austrian to Prussian administration under Frederick 
the Great in 1742. 24 

Glauer appears to have based his claim of adoption on both lines of 
the family. The only members of the family bearing the name 
Heinrich or living in America at the appropriate time came from the 
Prussian line. A certain Heinrich von Sebottendorff (b. 1825) was 
living in 1887 at Gorlitz, a town not far from Hoyerswerda. A common 
Silesian background might account for a relative of this Heinrich 
befriending Glauer in Constantinople. But when this adoption was 
reckoned invalid, Glauer approached the aged Austrian representative 
of the family, Siegmund von Sebottendorff von der Rose. Both lines 
sported the cinnamon blazon, which Glauer subsequently bore as his 
own. Besides the family’s Silesian association and the Austrian line’s 
involvement with Freemasonry during the late eighteenth century, it is 
difficult to know why Glauer should have latched on to this name, if 
the connection was entirely imaginary. In due course hostile 
rumours surrounded the issue with further confusion: one may only 
be certain that Glauer wished to use the name and pose as a baron. 
Since he came to be known by this name, this account will henceforth 
refer to him as Rudolf von Sebottendorff. 

SebottendorfPs second period in Turkey lasted four years. After 
fighting and receiving wounds in the T urkish forces during the Second 
Balkan War (October-December 1912), he returned to Germany, 
establishing himself at Berlin in early 19 13. 25 His activities and 
movements during the first half of the Great War are rather obscure. 
He claimed that he was at Breslau in 1913, where he financed the 
Gobel tank. Since this machine was a failure, his enterprise cannot 
have been rewarded. 26 Besides frequent visits to Siegmund von 
Sebottendorff at Wiesbaden, several accounts link him with Dresden 
at this time. When Siegmund died in October 1915 Sebottendorff was 
living at Kleinzschachwitz, a fashionable suburb lying on the banks of 
the River Elbe. Here he built a large villa in spacious grounds (now 
Meusslitzer Strasse 41) for 50,000 gold marks. Sebottendorff then 
became the subject of unfavourable rumours and he suddenly left. 27 
He later claimed that he had been the victim of a slanderous campaign 
concerning the fortune of his second wife. On 15 July 1915 at Vienna, 
Sebottendorff had married a divorcee, Berta Anna Iffland. As the 



141 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

daughter of the late Friedrich Wilhelm Muller, a wealthy Berlin 
merchant, she possessed significant funds in trust. Sebottendorff 
stated that Max Alsberg, the Berlin lawyer responsible for her estate, 
became hostile when relieved of his lucrative appointment following 
the marriage. Alsberg allegedly incited Heindl, a senior Dresden 
police officer, to defame Sebottendorff as a fortune-hunter. 28 Sebotten- 
dorff also had trouble with the Berlin authorities on account of his 
Turkish nationality, which prevented his conscription into the German 
army. 29 

After a succession of moves to Frankfurt and Berlin, Sebottendorff 
and his wife settled in 1916 at Bad Aibling, an elegant Bavarian spa. 
From here Sebottendorff consulted Georg Gaubatz, his Munich 
lawyer, in order to secure the police files relating to his contested 
Turkish nationality. Gaubatz happened to show him a newspaper 
advertisement for the Germanenorden which summoned fair-haired 
and blue-eyed German men and women of pure Aryan descent to join 
the Order. Three cryptic runes stood beneath this message. Sebotten- 
dorff was intrigued and acquired membership. In September 1916 
Sebottendorff decided to visit a chief of the mysterious Germanen- 
orden at Berlin. 30 This individual turned out to be Hermann Pohl. 
Pohl and Sebottendorff talked about the runes, the esoteric meaning 
of which seems to have interested the latter in the Order. Pohl 
explained that he had come to a study of the runes through Guido 
von List, and that he was convinced that racial miscegenation, 
especially with Jews, was responsible for obscuring the Aryans’ 
knowledge of the magical powers of the runes. He believed that this 
gnosis could be revived once the race had been purified of foreign 
contamination. 

When Sebottendorff enquired about the future of the Order, the 
other man said this would be clear once a meeting could be held to 
settle the confusion in Order affairs. Shortly before Christmas 
Sebottendorff received news that the Order had been reconstituted 
with Pohl as Chancellor. This information confirms that Sebottendorff 
had made contact with Pohl just before the schism. 31 At his meeting 
with Pohl, Sebottendorff had asked for a list of possible Order 
candidates in Bavaria. Upon his return to Bad Aibling he received 
about a hundred addresses and was entrusted with the task of working 
up the moribund Bavarian province of the Order. Throughout 1917 
Sebottendorff was very active on Pohl’s behalf. His correspondence 
with the people whose addresses he had received grew in volume. He 
began to visit them, and these visits led to regular group meetings and 



142 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

lectures. There was also a lively correspondence with Pohl, who had 
meanwhile rented a floor for a lodge in a house near the Potsdamer 
Bahnhof of Berlin. A dedication ceremony, to which Sebottendorff 
was invited, was held on 21 December 1917. Sebottendorff s offer to 
publish a monthly Order periodical was warmly received by the 
brothers: the first number oiRunen appeared injanuary 1918. He also 
agreed to assume the financial burden of the Allgemeine Ordens- 
Nachrichten newsletter, which was for members only. At this meeting 
Sebottendorff was formally elected Master of the Bavarian province. 32 

During 1918 Sebottendorff met an art student, the wounded 
veteran Walter Nauhaus, who became his right-hand man in the 
recruitment campaign. Nauhaus was a kindred spirit in two important 
respects: he shared an expatriate background and an interest in the 
occult. The son of a German missionary, he was born on 29 
September 1892 at Botsabelo in Transvaal. 33 During the Boer War 
the English garrisoned nearby Middelburg, where the family lived 
from July 1901 to June 1902. Following the death of his father the 
family returned to Germany in late 1 906. The family settled in Berlin, 
where Nauhaus began to study wood-carving in 1908. His leisure time 
was spent visiting relatives in Pomerania and Silesia, or rambling 
through the Prussian and Thuringian countryside with a volkisch youth 
group, an indication of his romantic attachment to the new fatherland. 
At the outbreak of war he joined a Pomeranian regiment, which saw 
early action on the Western Front, and Nauhaus was badly wounded 
near Chalons on 10 November 1914. He was not discharged from 
hospital until autumn 1915. Unfit for further military service, he 
devoted himself at Berlin to volkisch studies and joined the Germanen- 
orden in 1916, becoming a keeper of pedigrees. His reading ranged 
from Guido von Fist’s ‘researches’ to astrology, chiromancy, and the 
writings of Peryt Shou. In a letter to Fist he admitted to an interest in 
the Cabbala, and in Hindu and Egyptian religious beliefs. Like 
Sebottendorff, Nauhaus was fascinated by the mystical ideologies of 
ancient theocracies and secret cults. 34 In April 1917 Nauhaus followed 
his art teacher Professor Wackerle to Munich, where he soon opened 
his own studio. 

Sebottendorff and Nauhaus organized their activities so that 
Nauhaus would concentrate on the recruitment of younger members. 
Progress was initially slow, but the pace quickened as the year 
progressed. Sebottendorff claimed that the Order province numbered 
200 members in spring 1918; the following autumn there were 1,500 
members in all Bavaria with 250 in the capital. 35 Sebottendorff had 



143 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

held the meetings at his Munich apartment on the Zweigstrasse 
until July 1918 when five large club rooms with accommodation for 
300 guests were leased from the fashionable Hotel Vierjahreszeiten. 
Sebottendorff, Gaubatz, and Hering made arrangements for a formal 
dedication ceremony, which was attended by Hermann Pohl, G. W. 
Freese and other Germanenorden Walvater brethren from Berlin and 
Leipzig on 1 8 August 1 9 1 8. A week later a large investiture of novices 
took place, followed by a lecture from Pohl on the ‘sun-castles’ of Bad 
Aibling, which possessed esoteric national significance; Hering spoke 
also on German mythology. 36 Hering’ s diary records frequent meetings 
after this date: the lodge was convoked at least once a week for 
investitures, lectures, and excursions during the autumn. Lodge 
ceremony involved the use of a piano, harmonium, and female choir. 
Since these ritual Germanenorden activities were supplemented by 
overt right-wing meetings the term Thule Society had been adopted as 
a cover-name for the Order to spare it the unwelcome attentions of 
socialist and pro-Republican elements. The rooms were decorated 
with the Thule emblem showing a long dagger superimposed on a 
shining swastika sun-wheel. 

On Saturday evening, 9 November 1918, there was a ‘musical 
rehearsal’ in the Thule rooms. During the previous forty-eight hours 
there had been a bloodless revolution in Bavaria. The Wittelsbach 
royal family had made a hasty and ignominious flight, the wartime 
government had resigned, and the Soviet Workers’ and Soldiers’ 
Councils had assumed authority. The Bavarian revolution preceded 
that in Berlin by two days and was headed by a bohemian Jewish 
journalist. Kurt Eisner had been prominent as a pacifist and the leader 
of the Independent (‘minority’) Social Democrats in Munich. He had 
played an important part in the anti-war strikes of January 1918 for 
which he was gaoled until October. Against the background of 
domestic collapse in the defeated country he proclaimed a Socialist 
Republic, assuming the premiership and ministry of foreign affairs in 
a cabinet consisting of both ‘majority’ and ‘minority’ socialists. The 
members of the Thule Society, in common with others on the political 
right-wing in Munich, were dumbfounded by these unexpected and 
traumatic events. Germany was defeated, the Kaiser and ruling princes 
were abdicating, while republics were proclaimed byjewish socialists. 
The volkisch fatherland for which they had fought so long and hard had 
vanished overnight. 

It was in response to this disaster that Sebottendorff delivered an 
impassioned oration to the Thule that evening. The alleged text 



144 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 



betrays a striking mixture of monarchical, anti-Semitic and ariosophical 
sentiment: 

Wir erlebten gestem den Zusammenbruch alles dessen, was uns vertraut, was uns 
lieb und wert war. An Stelle unserer blutsverwandten Fiirsten herrscht unser 
Todfeind: Juda. Was sich aus dem Chaos entwickeln wird, wissen wir noch nicht. 

Wir konnen as ahnen. Eine Zeit wird kommen des Kampfes, der bittersten Not, eine 
Zeit der Gefahr! ... So lange ich hier den eisemen Hammer halte, bin ich gewillt die 
Thule in diesen Kampf einzusetzen! . . . Unser Orden ist ein Germanenorden, 
Germanisch ist die Treue. Unser Gott ist Walvater, seine Rune ist die Aarrune. Und 
die Dreiheit: Wodan, Wili, We ist die Einheit der Dreiheit . . . Die Aarrune bedeutet 
Arier, Uifeuer, Sonne, Adler. Und der Adler ist das Symbol der Arier. Um die 
Fdhigkeit der Selbstverbrennung des Adlers zu bezeichnen, wurde er rot ausgefuhrt 
. . . von heutab ist der rote Adler unser Symbol, er soil uns mahnen, dass wir durch 
den Tod gehen mils sen, um leben zu konnen. 3 ’’ 

[Yesterday we experienced the collapse of everything which was 
familiar, dear and valuable to us. In the place of our princes of 
Germanic blood rules our deadly enemy: J udah. What will come of this 
chaos, we do not know yet. But we can guess. A time will come of 
struggle, the most bitter need, a time of danger ... As long as I hold the 
iron hammer [a reference to his Master’s hammer], I am determined to 
pledge the Thule to this struggle. Our Order is a Germanic Order, 
loyalty is also Germanic. Our god is Walvater, his rune is the Ar-rune. 
And the trinity: Wotan, Wili, We is the unity of the trinity. The Ar-rune 
signifies Aryan, primal fire, the sun and the eagle. And the eagle is the 
symbol of the Aryans. In order to depict the eagle’s capacity for self- 
immolation by fire, it is coloured red. From today on our symbol is the 
red eagle, which warns us that we must die in order to live.] 

Sebottendorff’s references to the Ar-rune ( ) and the mystical 

resurrection of the eagle, which should become the militant symbol of 
the Aryans, are evidence of an unmistakable Listian influence. In 
1908 List had claimed that the Ar-rune denoted the sun, the primal 
fire, the Aryans and the eagle, while also alluding to the death and 
resurrection of the eagle as a specifically Germanic symbol of 
rebirth. 38 He also described the trinity of Wotan, Wili, and We in his 
Germanic-theosophical cosmogony of 19 10. 39 The name Thule may 
also be traced to ariosophical inspiration. The term derived from the 
name given to the northernmost land discovered by Pytheas in about 
300 BC. Sebottendorff identified his ‘Ultima Thule’ as Iceland; as the 
supposed outpost of Germanic refugees in List’s works, this country 
held an eminent position in the Armanist doctrine. 40 Exhorting Thule 
members to fight ‘until the swastika rises victoriously out of the icy 
darkness’, Sebottendorff closed his speech with a racist-theosophical 



145 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



poem written by Philipp Stauff. On the basis of this fustian rodomontade 
and its ariosophical mumbo-jumbo, one might be tempted to dismiss 
both Sebottendorff and the Thule Society. However, Sebottendorff 
subsequendy emerges as an important organizer of the nationalist 
reaction to the Eisner government and the succeeding Communist 
Republics at Munich in journalistic, military and political fields. 
Ariosophy had found a leader in the counter-revolution. 

Several months after the Nazi seizure of power in 1933, Sebotten- 
dorff published a book with the sensational title Bevor Hitler kam: 
Urkundliches aus der Fruhzeit der nationalsozialistischen Bewegung [Before 
Hitler Came: The early years of the Nazi movement ]. It related details 
of its author’s activities in Bavaria during the war and revolution in 
support of a prefatory thesis: 

Thule members were the people to whom Hider first turned, and who 
first allied themselves with Hitler. The armanent of the coming Fiihrer 
consisted— besides the Thule Society itself— of the Deutscher Arbeiterverein, 
founded in the Thule by Brother Karl Harrer at Munich, and the 
Deutsch-Sozialistische Partei, headed there by Hans Georg Grassinger, 
whose organ was the Mitnchener Beobachter , later the Volkischer Beobachter . 
From these three sources Hider created the Notionalsozialistische Arbeiter- 
partei.* 1 

Reginald Phelps has examined these claims in detail upon the basis of 
archival sources and independent accounts, concluding that Sebotten- 
dorff’s claims have some substance. 42 

Sebottendorff’ s statement that he provided the journalistic basis of 
the Nazi party is quite correct. The Beobachter was a minor weekly 
which had been published in the eastern suburbs of Munich since 
1868. It presented mosdy local stories with a middle-class, somewhat 
anti-clerical and anti-Semitic bias, and was owned from 1900 onwards 
by Franz Eher. When Eher died in June 1918, the paper ceased 
publication until Sebottendorff purchased it for 5,000 marks. He 
renamed it Munchener Beobachter und Sportblatt and included sporting 
features to win a youthful readership for his trenchant anti-Semitic 
editorial. 43 Fromjuly 1918 until May 1919 the newspaper office was at 
the Thule premises. After the Soviet revolution at Munich in 1919 
Sebottendorff moved the office to the premises occupied by H. G. 
Grassinger’s local branch of the Deutsch-Sozialistische Partei (DSP), 
another anti-Semitic nationalist group founded in 1918. Henceforth 
Grassinger was the newspaper’s production manager and the paper 
was his party’s official organ in Munich. 

The financial history of the paper after Sebottendorff left Munich in 

146 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

July 1919 indicates its gradual acquisition by the National Socialist 
Party. The DSP editors became divided amongst themselves in the 
summer, and Sebottendorff summoned his sister Dora Kunze and the 
paper’s nominal proprietor, his mistress Kathe Bierbaumer, for a 
conference at Constance to clarify the position and dismiss unsuitable 
personnel. The paper was then converted into a limited liability 
company. The issued capital of the new company, Franz Eher Verlag 
Nachf., was 120,000 marks held by two shareholders: Bierbaumer’s 
holding represented 1 10,000 marks, while Kunze’s was 10,000 marks. 
However, by 20 March 1920 the shareholders were as follows: 



Gottfried Feder 


10,000 marks 


Franz Xaver Eder 


10,000 


Franz von Freilitzsch 


20,000 


Wilhelm Gutberlet 


10,000 


Theodor Heuss 


10,000 


Karl Alfred Braun 


3,500 


Dora Kunze 


10,000 


Kathe Bierbaumer 


46,500 



Gottfried Feder was one of Hider’s earliest followers; Freilitzsch and 
Heuss were members of the Thule. It will be clear that Sebottendorff, 
through his women, had lost a controlling interest by early 1920. By 17 
December 1920 all the shares were in the hands of Anton Drexler as 
nominee for the National Socialist Party. They were transferred to 
Adolf Hider in November 1921. 44 

Sebottendorff’s second contribution to the nationalist reaction 
concerns military operations. The Thule stockpiled weapons for 
Lehmann’s Pan-Germans during November 1918 in the event of an 
armed counter-revolution against Eisner’s government. Two schemes 
for intervention were hatched. Early in December Sebottendorff 
planned to kidnap Eisner at a rally in Bad Aibling, but this failed. An 
attempt to expand counter-revolutionary activity through the establish- 
ment of a vigilante civilian guard ( Burgerwehr ), organized by Rudolf 
Buttmann and Heinz Kurz of the Thule, was also unsuccessful once 
the Left in the city became suspicious. 45 More effective was Sebotten- 
dorff’s foundation of the Kamfifbund Thule during the period of the 
Communist Republic in Munich, when the legal government had 
taken refuge at Bamberg. Battle training was held clandestinely at 
Eching, several kilometres north of Munich; Communist organizations 
were penetrated, and Sebottendorff was authorized by the cabinet at 
Bamberg to recruit Bavarians for a Free Corps attack upon the 



147 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

embattled capital. There was a busy traffic in forged railway passes, 
which enabled Thule members and sympathizers to leave Munich 
and travel to a marshalling-point at Treuchtlingen. These men 
contributed to the forces of the Bund Oberland in the successful 
White onslaught against the Communist-held city from 30 April to 3 
May 1919. 

Eisner had been assassinated on 21 February by Count Arco auf 
Valley, a young Jew resentful at his exclusion from the Thule who 
wished to prove his nationalist commitment. Disorder was henceforth 
endemic. A shaky coalition government was established by ‘majority’ 
Social Democrats under Johannes Hoffmann, but the cabinet was 
compelled to flee to Bamberg as the situation deteriorated in early 
April. On 6 April a group of anarchist intellectuals proclaimed the 
Bavarian Soviet Republic, inspired by the example of Bela Kun in 
Hungary, who had sent a wave of red inspiration up the Danube to 
defeated Austria and Germany. After this quixotic administration had 
fallen within a week, a more serious Communist band seized power 
on 13 April. Leadership was vested in the Russian emigres Levine- 
Nissen, Axelrod, and Levien, who had been blooded in the 1905 
Russian revolution. Their reign of terror was mitigated only by its 
inefficiency: violent decree followed decree; drunken soldiers of the 
‘Red Army’ ran through the streets plundering and looting; schools, 
banks, and newspaper offices were shut. 

After trying unsuccessfully to build a counter-revolutionary army at 
Bamberg, Hoffman was forced on 1 5 April to invite the aid of the Von 
Epp and other Free Corps, whose anti-Republican sympathies had 
previously led to their being banned in Bavaria. As the ring of White 
troops tightened around Munich, the Communists raided nationalist 
strongpoints within the city. They broke into the Thule premises on 26 
April and arrested the secretary Countess Heila von Westarp and in 
the course of the day six more members were taken. The Red 
commandant Egelhofer proclaimed the next day that ‘a band of 
criminals ... of the so-called upper classes . . . arch reactionaries, agents 
and touts for the Whites’, had been captured. The hostages were taken 
to the cellar of the Luitpold Gymnasium, which had served as a Red 
Army post since mid- April. The seven Thule members and three other 
men were shot on 30 April as a reprisal for reports of the killing of Red 
prisoners by Whites at Starnberg. Four of the seven Thulists were titled 
aristocrats including Prince Gustav von Thurn und Taxis, who was 
related to several European royal families. Munich and the world 
looked on aghast. 46 



148 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

The shooting of the hostages enraged the hitherto quiescent 
Munich citizenry. Rumours spread, compounding the deed with 
accounts of frightful atrocities. The White troops accelerated their 
advance and began to enter the city on 1 May, finding a citizen 
uprising organized by the Thule in progress. The fighting was heavy 
and tempers ran high on account of the murdered hostages. In return 
hundreds were shot, including many who had not even remotely 
favoured the Communist Republic. When the storm was over, the 
Hoffmann government was returned to power. A parliamentary 
government of ‘majority’ Socialists and parties to their right was 
formed, but it was evident that actual authority had slipped from the 
Social Democrats owing to their reliance on anti- Republican elements. 
Everywhere in Germany the old social and political forces had 
regained strength between January and May 1919, but nowhere were 
the successes of the counter-revolution so great as in Bavaria. Because 
of its propaganda and counter-revolutionary action, and also because 
of the martyrdom of its hostages, the Thule Society and the Germanen- 
orden had a major share in the creation of a raw and rancorous 
atmosphere at Munich in which extremist movements like National 
Socialism could thrive. 

Besides his journalism and military ventures, Sebottendorff generated 
a centre of political discussion and assembly for many groups in the 
nationalist reaction. When the revolution had initially broken out in 
November 1918, many volkisch groups lost their premises, as landlords 
felt obliged to give no opposition to the new Republican government. 
Sebottendorff claimed that the Thule rooms in the Hotel Vierjahres- 
zeiten became a haven for such groups; hospitality was extended to 
the National Liberal Party of Hans Dahn, the Pan-Germans, and the 
Deutscher Schulverein of Wilfielm Rohmeder, while Thule guests included 
Gottfried Feder, Alfred Rosenberg, Dietrich Eckart, and Rudolf Hess, 
all to achieve prominence in the Nazi Party. 47 A study of the 
membership list reveals that the Thule supporters were drawn 
principally from lawyers, judges, university professors, aristocratic 
members of the Wittelsbach royal entourage, industrialists, doctors, 
scientists, and rich businessmen like the proprietor of the elegant 
Hotel Vierjahreszeiten. 48 

The pan-German and anti-Semitic ideology of the Thule Society 
was supplemented by Sebottendorff’s penchant for Ariosophy in his 
public eulogies of Fritsch, List, Lanz von Liebenfels and Stauff. This 
intellectual tendency is evidenced by the Thule study-rings formed to 
investigate Germanic law under Hering, Nordic culture under 



149 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Nauhaus, and heraldry and genealogy under Anton Daumenlang, 
which are all familiar fields of gnostic racism. However, in autumn 
1918 Sebottendorff had attempted to extend the appeal of the Thule’s 
nationalist ideology for the working classes by entrusting Karl Harrer 
(1890—1926), a sports reporter on a Munich evening paper, with the 
formation of a workers’ ring. 49 Although Sebottendorff called this ring 
the Deutscher Arbeiterverein, it is clearly identical to the Politische Arbeiter- 
Zirkel, founded in October 1918. Its members included Harrer as 
chairman, Anton Drexler, the most active member, and Michael 
Lotter as secretary. This tiny group, with only three to seven members 
in regular attendance, met weekly through the winter. Harrer lectured 
on such subjects as the causes of military defeat, the Jewish enemy, 
and anti-English sentiment. 50 In December Drexler urged the discussion 
circle to found a political party and the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (German 
Workers’ Party) (DAP) was formally founded in the Fiirstenfelder Hof 
tavern on 5 January 1919, its supporters coming chiefly from the ranks 
of Drexler’ s colleagues at the locomotive works. Drexler’s constitution 
for the party was accepted by twenty-four men and he was elected 
chairman. 51 

The precise relationship of the new party with the workers’ ring of 
Thulean inspiration remains indeterminate. Franz Dannehl, a Thule 
member and a DAP speaker, claims to have discussed the founding of 
the party with Harrer at the Hotel Vieriahreszeiten, but Drexler’s 
pamphlet Mein politisches Erwachen (1919) mentions neither Dannehl 
nor Harrer nor the foundation of the party. Although the minutes of 
the ring indicate no discussions of racist Weltanschauung beyond a 
rudimentary form of anti-Semitism, it is probable that Harrer’ s volkisch 
ideas infiltrated the ring and influenced Drexler and the DAP, which 
was transformed a year later, at the end of February 1920, into the 
National Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP). However, the 
DAP line was predominantly one of extreme political and social 
nationalism, and not based on the Aryan-racist-occult pattern of the 
Germanenorden. 

Adolf Hitler first encountered the DAP at a meeting on 12 
September 1919. Originally sent as an army spy to monitor the group, 
Hider joined the tiny party and lectured to large audiences in taverns 
from November. He was interested in a mass political party and 
impatient with the small conspiratory nature of the group. In 
December he drafted regulations for the committee, giving it full 
authority and preventing any ‘side government’ by a ‘circle or lodge’. 
This was aimed at Harrer, who bowed out of office injanuary 1920. 52 



150 




RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

The contemptuous attack of Hitler on ‘volkisch wandering scholars’ in 
Mein Kampf presumably echoes his quarrel with Harrer and the 
conspiratory lodge approach of groups like the Thule Society and the 
Germanenorden, just as it proclaims that open mass political party 
activity is essential to success. 

Although the DAP and the Thule Society diverged in their views on 
ideology and action, there was a direct line of symbological succession 
between the two groups in the form of the swastika. Friedrich Krohn, a 
Thulean and a member of the Germanenorden since 1913, had 
earned the reputation of a DAP expert as a result of his collection of 
some 2,500 books on volkisch subjects for the use of party members. In 
May 1919 Krohn wrote a memorandum with the tide ‘1st das 
Hakenkreuz als Symbol nationalsozialistischer Partei geeignet?’ [‘Is 
the swastika suitable as the symbol of the National Socialist Party?’], in 
which he proposed the left-handed swastika (i.e. clockwise in common 
with those of the theosophists and the Germanenorden) as the symbol 
of the DAP. He evidendy preferred the sign in this direction on 
account of its Buddhistical interpretation as a talisman of fortune and 
health, whereas its right-handed (i.e. anti-clockwise) counterpart 
betokened decline and death. (However, since most Listian swastikas 
and the device of the Thule Society had been right-handed, it is clear 
that there was no standard usage regarding the direction of the 
swastika in the volkisch tradition). Hitler actually favoured a right- 
handed, straight-armed swastika and prevailed upon Krohn in DAP 
committee discussions to revise his design. Krohn was responsible for 
the colour scheme of a black swastika in a white circle on a red 
background. At the foundation meeting of the local Starnberg group 
of the NSDAP on 20 May 1920, this swastika, originally proposed by 
Krohn and modified by Hitler, made its first public appearance as the 
flag of the new movement. 53 It is therefore possible to trace the origin 
of the Nazi symbol back through the emblems of the Germanenorden 
and ultimately to Guido von List. 

Sebottendorff’s subsequent career might be the blueprint for a 
'volkisch wandering scholar’. Following the angry reaction of Thule 
members who held him negligently responsible for the loss of the 
membership lists to the hostages’ killers, Sebottendorff attended no 
further Thule meetings after 22 June 1919. His political adventure was 
now over and he had to find a new career. Since 1913 he had been a 
keen student of astrology and this became his principal activity when 
he succeeded Ernst Tiede as editor of the periodical Astrologische 
Rundschau in October 1920. Tiede had inspired Lanz von Liebenfels 



151 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

with his prophetic literature at the outbreak of war. He had subse- 
quendy published a markedly occult- racist text, Ur-Arische Gotteserkenntnis 
[Ancient Aryan God-Knowledge ] (1917), which described the mysteries 
and sun- religions of the ancient Aryan theocracies, and he corresponded 
with Guido von List about theosophy and ‘armanist’ wisdom in the 
Old Testament. 54 Sebottendorff followed in these footsteps. Between 
1921 and 1923 he wrote no less than seven astrological text-books 
which enjoyed a high prestige among contemporary German astrologers 
for their empirical precision and clarity. He also edited the periodical 
at Bad Sachsa in the Harz mountains until 1 923. He was always fond of 
small fashionable spa towns, where he could pose as a baron. 

In spring 1923 Sebottendorff left for the lakeside resorts of 
Switzerland. At Lugano he completed his occult treatise on the 
BaktashT dervishes and their relationship to the alchemists and 
Rosicrucians. After staying in Switzerland throughout 1 924 he returned 
to Turkey. From 1926 until 1928 he acted as the honorary Mexican 
consul in Istanbul, subsequently travelling in the United States and 
Central America between 1929 and 1931. At some stage he acquired 
the knighthood of the Imperial Constantine Order, a royalist and 
chivalrous league, whose anti- Bolshevik ideology and noble trappings 
must have been dear to his heart. 55 He returned to Munich in 1 933 to 
revive the Thule Society in the Third Reich, but soon fell into 
disfavour with the Nazi authorities on account of his claims to have 
been the precursor of early National Socialism. He was briefly 
interned at the beginning of 1 934. 56 Again Sebottendorff made his way 
to Turkey via Switzerland, and eventually found employment under 
Herbert Rittlinger in the German Intelligence Service at Istanbul 
during the war. His former chief recalled him as a penurious and 
amiable old gentleman, whose information was regrettably useless. 
When the Germans left Istanbul in September 1944, Sebottendorff 
received funds to keep him modestly for a year. After the war 
Rittlinger received reliable information that the old baron had thrown 
himself into the Bosporus on 9 May 1945. As his last known contact, 
Rittlinger has the final word: ‘the old and lonely baron was at the end 
of his tether; no money, cut off and without the slightest hope of 
ending his days with even the most slender resources. The day the 
armistice was signed, with the implication of total defeat, would have 
depressed him even further.’ 57 Thus ended the life of the adventurer 
who had introduced Ariosophy to the Nazi Party. 



152 




12 



The Holy Runes 
and the Edda Society 



In 1918 the old Wilhelmian world in Germany was swept irrevocably 
away. The war had been finally lost after four years’ now seemingly 
futile sacrifice of lives, loved ones, youthful hopes and ambitions, and 
economic resources. The shock of military defeat was compounded 
by its unexpectedness following recent successes on the Western Front 
and the collapse of Russia. The sudden armistice encouraged a ‘stab in 
the back’ legend, whereby a conspiracy of socialists and Jews at home 
was supposed to have betrayed the armies in the field. The harsh 
conditions of the Versailles peace setdement imposed further burdens 
on the weary and confused country: former Reich territories were 
ceded, war reparations of money and industrial output were demanded, 
and the occupation by foreign troops completed the humiliation of 
the nation. The Kaiser and other ruling princes had abdicated, while 
in their place unfamiliar politicians set about the establishment of a 
parliamentary democracy, typically perceived as the creature of the 
victors and hostile interests. Between 1918 and 1 923 Germany was 
convulsed by local uprisings and civil war, several attempted putschs, 
frontier skirmishes with Poland, and disastrous domestic inflation. 
The chaos of the new Republic made a miserable contrast with the 
imperial glitter and pompous splendour of the gilded pre-war era. 
Germany suffered a political and cultural trauma as it painfully sought 
adjustment to its new circumstances. 

These wretched conditions naturally favoured the emergence of 
myths and ideologies concerned with the restoration of the supposed 
halcyon past or at least the removal of those influences deemed 
responsible for Germany’s terrible downfall. Although a tiny minority 
of monarchists intrigued for the return of the exiled Kaiser, most new 
right-wing movements represented a revolutionary break with the 
Second Reich. Apocalyptic nationalist poetry aimed at the Allies 



153 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

flourished and volkisch groups sprang up to fulminate against thejews, 
the communists, and the Freemasons. Nationalist revolutionaries 
embraced a romantic freebooter spirit and joined the Free Corps, 
private armies which fought in the Baltic states, against Poland, and 
also against communist rebels in Germany. Other neo-conservatives 
preached the necessity of a new feudal order, a corporate state, or a 
Third Reich. The pre-war youth movement expanded with the 
proliferation of leagues devoted to the celebration of their own 
exclusive male community, athletic adventure and romantic nationalism. 1 

Fresh support for the occult-nationalist ideas of Guido von List 
formed on the visionary fringes of the post-war volkisch movement. In 
many cases this was a matter of old supporters reaching new 
audiences. Ellegaard Ellerbek, List’s ardent war-time admirer, 
embarked on a vigorous anti-Republican campaign which utilized an 
astonishing variety of gnostic, theosophical, and anti-Semitic notions 
to vilify the Allies, denounce materialism, and to elevate the Germans 
to the status of god- men. His Versailler Visionen (1919) described the 
subtle aura suspended over each of the European nations as a function 
of their spiritual character and concluded with an ‘occult- armanistic’ 
exhortation to his countrymen: ‘Do you know that you are gods?’ The 
next year he published a novel entitled Sonne Sonnings Sohne auf 
Sonnensee (1920), which mixed a farrago of solar symbolism with an 
account of a volkisch utopia and contained four letters from Guido von 
List in an appendix. Ellerbek lectured widely in Germany, claiming 
that the Germans were blood descendants of the ancient pagan gods, 
and wrote anti-Semitic articles in a mystical vein for Dietrich Eckart’s 
paper Auf gut deutsch [In Plain German}. His imagination was both 
apocalyptic and catastrophic during the revolutionary period. Once 
he declared that a frieze in the house of Walther Rathenau, Foreign 
Minister of the new Republic, depicted the execution of all living kings 
and attracted considerable public notice when the Jewish politician 
was assassinated shortly afterwards. Ellerbek was even remembered in 
the prison diary of Alfred Rosenberg, as he awaited execution at 
Nuremberg in 1946. 

The List Society continued at new headquarters in Berlin under the 
enthusiastic leadership of Philipp Stauff, the chief German disciple of 
the old master. From his home at Moltkestrasse 46a in Berlin- 
Lichterfelde Stauff published new editions of List’s Ario-Germanic 
researches between 1920 and 1922. Following his suicide on 17 July 
1923 his widow Berta Stauff took over the administration of the 
publishing house and the Society continued to serve as a meeting- 



154 




THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

point between pre-war members, the Germanenorden, and new- 
comers throughout the 1920s. Tarnhari frequented the Stauff home, 
as did Gunther Kirchhoff, an occultist with a penchant for genealogy 
and Germanic prehistory. Eberhard von Brockhusen, Grand Master 
of the Germanenorden, acted as President of the Society until his 
death in March 1939. The political influence of the List Society was 
limited, as its principal function was a social forum for the Stauff circle 
and their volkisch contacts at Berlin. The more activist contribution of 
the Germanenorden and the Thule Society to counter-revolution at 
Munich immediately after the war will be obvious. 

Whereas these individuals and groups essentially cultivated the 
traditional Armanism of List, a new post-war Aryan occultist move- 
ment was started by Rudolfjohn Gorsleben ( 1883-1930). On the basis 
of the runes, occultism, and the Edda, Gorsleben created an original 
racist mystery- religion which illuminated the priceless magical heritage 
of the Aryans and justified their spiritual and political world- 
supremacy. Born on 16 March 1883 at Metz, Gorsleben was brought 
up in Alsace-Lorraine, a French province which had been annexed by 
the German Reich in 1 87 1 after its victory in the Franco-Prussian war. 
The inhabitants of this area spoke a German dialect and wavered in 
their political allegiance between Berlin and Paris, thus encouraging 
the local growth of Pan-Germanism during the 1890s. Gorsleben 
encountered nationalism at an early age in this borderland; as a 
staunch German patriot he was proud to trace his ancestry back to a 
fourteenth-century noble family in Thuringia. Little is known of his 
youth except that he arrived in Munich sometime before the First 
World War. His first ambitions concerned a career in the theatre, for 
he published a play called Der Rastaqudr (1913), which had a short run 
in the city. He then turned to journalism and edited a pamphlet 
magazine devoted to nationalist and Pan-German ideas, Allgemeine 
Flugblatter Deutscher Nation. At the outbreak of war Gorsleben volunteered 
for service with a Bavarian regiment, which fought for two years on the 
Western Front. He then transferred to a German unit attached to the 
Turkish army in Arabia, fighting against the Bedouin tribes and their 
British supporters in Palestine. Gorsleben held the rank of lieutenant 
and won twelve military distinctions. He also kept a wartime diary, 
from which an extract about his Arabian campaign was later published. 
Even these early writings reflect a strong interest in mythology and the 
importance of race in historical development. 2 

At the end of the war Gorsleben returned to Munich. The 
revolutionary period politicized him further and he became associated 



155 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



with the Thule Society. In April 1919 he was arrested together with 
Dietrich Eckart by communist insurgents during the Soviet revolution 
in the city. Only Eckart’s quick-witted answers under interrogation 
prevented their summary execution in common with the other Thule 
hostages. 3 On 18 December 1920 Gorsleben delivered a lecture 
entitled ‘The Aryan Man’ to the Thule. In his diary of society meetings 
Johannes Hering commented on the occult tendencies in Gorsleben’s 
thought and their later efflorescence in his mature doctrine of Aryan 
mysticism. 4 Over the next two years Gorsleben was highly active in 
local revolutionary right-wing politics. In July 1921 he became 
Gauleiter of the South Bavarian section of the radical anti-Semitic 
Deutschvolkischer Schutz- und Trutzbund, which was then competing with 
the early Nazi party for support in Southern Germany. By December 
1921 Gorsleben had decided to break with the league’s central office at 
Hamburg and he formed a new alliance with Julius Streicher — who 
later edited Der Stunner under Nazi auspices — finding considerable 
support at Regensburg and Nuremberg. Gorsleben also worked 
closely with Lorenz Mesch, the Germanenorden chief in Regensburg, 
whose proteges Schulz and Tillessen carried out the Erzberger 
assassination. 5 However, after a stormy period of internal party strife, 
Gorsleben retired from volkisch politics to devote his time fully to 
literary and ideological interests. He embarked upon a major translation 
of the Edda, which he regarded as a distillation of old Aryan religion. 

In 1920 Gorsleben had acquired a floundering Munich weekly 
newspaper called Die Republik, which he renamed Deutsche Freiheit 
[■ German Freedom ] and edited in a volkisch spirit. His contributors 
included Friedrich Wichd, the Austrian theorist of masonic world- 
conspiracy, and Hans F. K. Gunther, the racist anthropologist. 
Between 1920 and 1925 the paper adhered to a conventional 
nationalist line, save for its occasional references to the occult powers 
of the Aryan race. From late 1926 onwards this supranational 
mystical racism prevailed in the magazine as Gorsleben began to 
expound his own brand of Aryan occultism. His doctrine corresponded 
to modern occultism and theosophy in several respects: it regarded 
astrology, cabbalism and magic as its metaphysical bases; its ultimate 
objective was the creation of a racially pure humanity and the spiritual 
advancement of the Aryans; the precondition of such advancement 
was the re-activation of occult powers inherent in each Aryan 
individual, enabling him to master the natural world; any mechanistic 
or materialistic conception of reality was rejected out of hand; lasdy, it 
propagated the advent of a new age, in which the Aryan would regain 



156 




THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

his former splendour and authority in the world. The later works of 
Gorsleben presented such doctrine as the rediscovered wisdom of the 
ancient Aryans. His periodical henceforth carried the sub-tide 
‘Monatsschrift fur arische Gottes- und Welterkenntnis’ and was 
renamed Arische Freiheit [ Aryan Freedom] in 1927. 

Gorsleben’s actual racism was based on Social Darwinism and later 
eulogies of the Aryan type. He derived the word ‘race’ from rata, an old 
Norse term meaning ‘root’, in order to conclude that God and race 
were identical. He claimed that the Aryans were ‘the sons of the sun, 
the sons of the gods, the supreme manifestation of life’ and described 
their world-view as heroic, inasmuch as the Aryans sacrificed individual 
benefit for the good of the world. Indeed, their vocation was the 
setdement and conquest of the whole world. Gorsleben inveighed 
against the vulgar, corrupt, and wretched modern world as the sad 
result of racial mixing and comforted the (relatively) pure Germans 
with such words as ‘Know that your body is the temple of God. God 
dwells within you.’ He maintained that racial mixing was always 
detrimental for the racially superior partner, since his purity was 
debased in the progeny, and he repeated the common volkisch 
conviction that woman could be ‘impregnated’ by intercourse, even 
when no conception occurred, so diat her subsequent offspring bore 
the characteristics of her first lover. Given these overwhelming 
pressures towards the increasing bastardization of the German 
descendants of the Aryan race, only the strict practice of segregation 
and eugenics could guarantee the reversal of racial contamination in 
the world. 6 

But Gorsleben emphasized the spiritual reawakening and occult 
education of the Aryans even more than this imperative to proper 
breeding practices. The esoteric importance of the runes was central 
to his account of the magical Aryan world-view and these ideas 
distinguished him sharply from other volkisch writers. Prehistorians 
generally accepted that the runes had possessed a symbolism over and 
above their phonetic value and use in writing, so that they were 
accordingly used for divination, the casting of lots, magical invocations, 
and the preparation of amulets and charms. Gorsleben sought to 
reconstruct this spiritual science of the runes and their magical uses. 
In the first place he regarded the runes as conductors of a subtle 
energy that animated the entire universe, and therefore as devices 
which could be used to influence the material world and the course of 
events. The runes were a link between the macrocosm and the 
microcosm of Aryan man, a representation of God in the world. ‘The 



157 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

runes had arisen from the original relationship between the human 
racial spirit of the god-sons and the world-spirit, and they could lead 
the true seeker back to his cosmic homeland and offer a mystical 
union with God.’ 7 Gorsleben illustrated these neo-gnostic notions by 
numerous diagrams showing the individual runes within the most 
sacred rune, the hagall rune [>j<], and the presence of this rune in such 
symbols and devices as the hexagram, the heraldic lily, the world-ash 
of Norse mythology, magical squares, and the Cheops pyramid in 
Egypt. 8 He also developed an occult doctrine of crystals, according to 
which the spirit of any individual could be seen mediumistically as a 
specific type of crystal. The crystal types indicated the aptitude and 
destiny of the subject. Gorsleben declared that the crystals were but 
solid geometrical projections of the runes, in order to prove their 
cosmic importance yet again. 9 

Gorsleben elaborated these theories with a wide variety of geo- 
metrical, numerological, and etymological constructs. The cube was 
‘unpacked’ to produce a Christian cross, the hagall rune was trans- 
formed into various solar symbols, and the word ‘crystal’ ( Kristall ) was 
derived from Krist-All, thus indicating an ancient Krist religion of 
Atlantean and Aryan provenance which had been supposedly 
bowdlerized as the new gospel of Jesus. As evidence for this 
prehistoric Krist religion Gorsleben produced many examples of 
crosses from antique civilizations throughout the world and even 
traced the monogram of Christ [>fc] to a variant form of the hagall rune 
The highly arcane nature of Gorsleben’s gnosis is evident from 
the cover of Deutsche Freiheit in December 1926, the second special 
issue devoted to Armanen-wisdom: the theme ‘From Hag- All to Krist- 
All’ is graphically illustrated by the familiar hagall rune, incorporating 
a hexagram and a hexagon, and the variant hagall rune superimposed 
on a set of concentric circles. Beneath these two occult symbols are 
printed the words ‘Ask’ and ‘Embla’, the numerical expressions 3x3 
and 7+9, and the cryptic question ‘human sacrifice?’. The usual 
magazine logotype stands in the centre of the page: two curved-arm 
swastikas within a hexagram formed by two triangles and flanked by 
the motto ‘Like is only understood by like’. 

This esoteric representation of ancient Aryan wisdom bears a 
structural resemblance to the notions of Guido von List, whom 
Gorsleben often quoted with approval. Gorsleben expanded and 
buttressed his own exposition of Aryan religion with an impressive 
array of examples and illustrations drawn from numerous scholarly 
studies in prehistory, archaeology, ethnology, and art history. His 



158 




THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

great life-work, Hoch-Zeit der Menschheit [The Zenith of Humanity ] ( 1 930), 
which described the former glory of the Aryan world, reproduced 
over a hundred plates from such works, including photographs, line 
drawings, diagrams, and maps. The lost civilization of Atlantis, the 
megalithic stone circles of Europe, archaeological finds, ornaments, 
bas-reliefs, the various rune futharks, astrology, and mathematical 
theorems were all discussed as evidence for the former high civilization 
of the Aryans. Their wisdom was similarly held to have survived in a 
wide variety of cultural forms, including the runic shapes of beams in 
half-timbered houses, coats-of-arms, countless symbols and words, 
and even in the picture Melencolia by Albrecht Dtirer. 10 

Gorsleben regarded old Icelandic literature, especially the Edda, as 
‘the richest source of Aryan intellectual history’. 11 On 29 November 
1 925 he founded an Aryan study-group called the Edda Society at his 
farmhouse in Dinkelsbiihl, a romantic medieval town in Franconia. 
The members of the Society were mostly authors in their own right 
and contributed to Gorsleben’s eclectic reconstruction of the Aryan 
religion. Werner von Billow (1870-1947), the Grand Master of the 
Society, was a retired civil servant from West Prussia who owned the 
Hotel Karwendel at Mittenwald in Upper Bavaria. He designed a 
‘world-rune-clock’, which showed the correspondence of the eighteen 
runes with the colours, the zodiacal signs, the gods of the months, 
numbers, skaldic names, and the Listian trinity of ‘birth’, ‘being’, and 
‘death’. 12 Similar ideas were expressed in his short work Der Ewigkeits- 
gehalt der eddischen Runen und Zahlen (1925). The treasurer of the Society 
was Friedrich Schaefer at Miihlhausen, whose wife Kathe kept open 
house for another occult-t >olkisch group which gathered round Karl 
Maria Wiligut in the early 1930s. Other members of the Edda Society 
included Martin Brticher and Albert March, who had written an 
esoteric book on German nationalism involving a quasi-Listian proto- 
language and the principle of parallax; 13 Karl Niise, a prominent 
volkisch private scholar; Otto Sigfrid Reuter, the leader of the Germanic 
Belief Fellowship and author of many books on astrology, prehistoric 
pagan religion, and the Edda; Carl Reinhold Petter, president of a 
pan-Aryan league at Danzig; and Mathilde von Kemnitz, a prolific 
volkisch writer who spearheaded the Ludendorff movement after her 
marriage to the general in September 1926. 14 Gorsleben was Chancellor 
of the Society and his periodical Deutsche Freiheit, later Arische Freiheit, 
was published as the organ of the Society. After Gorsleben’s death, 
due to a long-standing heart complaint, on 23 August 1930 at Bad 
Homburg, Billow took over the editorship and the paper was 



159 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

renamed Hag All All Hag, later simply Hagai, and continued publication 
up until 1939. 

During the 1930s Billow ran the Edda Society according to its 
original principles of research into the Edda and other relics of the 
ancient Aryan religion. However, in 1933 the Society explicitly 
declared its adherence to the National Socialist world-view in a new 
memorandum. 15 The magazine Hag All All Hag remained principally 
concerned with the interpretation of Edda verse, mythology and 
ancient monuments with the runes acting as interpretative devices on 
the basis of their phonetic and numerical values. Bulow was particularly 
interested in the myths surrounding Odin, Brunhild, Gudrun, and 
Heimdall, but other contributors focused more narrowly on the 
symbolism of specific buildings or regional localities. Political issues 
were also occasionally addressed. It was claimed that the Nazi 
revolution in Germany was taking place according to higher cosmic 
laws and that it was necessary to subordinate personal interests to 
those of the community; articles also marked the Anschluss of Austria 
and the annexation of Bohemia and Moravia. 16 Ini 934 Hagai devoted 
three numbers to the ancestral memory and family traditions of Karl 
Maria Wiligut, the elderly volkisch seer who was recruited into the SS for 
his clairvoyant knowledge of the ancient Germanic past. In this and 
subsequent years Bulow emphasized such family traditions as the 
supreme key to an understanding of the old Aryan beliefs. 17 Gunther 
Kirchhoff, a post-war List Society member and a correspondent of 
Wiligut, contributed several articles on heraldry, astrology, and local 
history. Other important writers for the magazine included Ida 
Schulze, Karl Ntise, Richard Anders, and Josef Heinsch, a leading 
proponent of the German school of geomancy or sacred geography. 

Besides Gorsleben, Billow, and the Edda Society there were other 
advocates of rune occultism during the 1920s and 1930s. These 
individuals cultivated a highly practical engagement with the runes 
within a less explicitly Aryan racist context. Friedrich Bernhard Marby 
(1882-1966) founded a mystical school of rune occultism which 
emphasized the beneficial and healing properties of the runes when 
used as incantations or gymnastic postures in imitation of their forms. 
Born on 10 May 1882 at Aurich in North Friesland, Marby had served 
an apprenticeship to a printer in Hanover, where he remained until 
1915. During these years he developed his rune theories, as a result of 
contact with the literature of Guido von List. After moving in 1917 to 
Stuttgart, where he worked as an editor on the regional newspaper, 
Marby became deeply interested in astrology, whose precepts he 



160 




THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

combined with the rune tradition. In 1924 he started his own paper 
Der eigene Weg and published several short monographs on the runes 
and their use in meditation and health-building in his Marby-Runen- 
Bilcherei book series from 1931 onwards. Between 1928 and 1930 he 
also pursued his own ancestral research in Sweden and Denmark. 
Denounced as an anti-Nazi occultist during the Third Reich, Marby 
was sent to Welzheim concentration camp in 1936. After more than 
eight years’ captivity at Flossenbiirg and Dachau, he was finally freed 
by the invading Allied armies in April 1 945. Marby resumed his occult 
researches after the war, writing new books and editing his magazine 
Forschung und Erfahrung until his death on 3 December 1966. 18 

In the scientific idiom of the early twentieth century Marby 
regarded man as a sensitive receiver and transmitter of cosmic waves 
and rays, which animated the entire universe and whose specific 
nature and effect were dependent on planetary influences, earth 
magnetism, and the physical form of the landscape. Within this 
macrocosmic-microcosmic model Marby saw the runes not just as 
letters or phonetic values but as representations of postures and 
movements which man could perform in order to improve his 
reception of these cosmic influences. He therefore devised a system of 
rune-gymnastics whereby the subject imi tated the forms of runes, in 
order to enjoy the particular influences associated with them. The 
repetition of the rune sound as a vocal incantation or mantra was also 
recommended. Both practices indicate a certain debt to yoga, which 
was familiar to esoteric groups in Germany following its theosophical 
popularization after the First World War. Marby conceived of the 
ancient Aryan and Germanic holy places as rune training-grounds, 
typically sited in craters, on mountains and hills, and in the vicinity of 
water due to its magnetic and reflective properties. His ideas were 
imbued with Listian usage: the sanctuaries were described as Halgadome 
and were formerly tended by the Albruna, Thruda, and Wala 
priestesses; the esoteric interpretation of coats-of-arms also helped to 
locate places with such associations. After the war Marby devoted 
himself to astrological practice and studied such matters as the shape 
of towers and church spires in relation to local planetary influence. 19 

Siegfried Adolf Kummerfb. 1899) similarly emphasized the practical 
side of rune occultism. In 1927 he founded the rune school Runa at 
Dresden, which collaborated with the Ariosophical summer school of 
the Richter brothers at Barenstein in 1932. Using the traditions of 
ritual magic, Kummer instructed his pupils to draw a protective 
magical circle inscribed with the names of the Germanic gods upon 



161 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

the floor and to use a candelabrum, censor, and aspersorium as they 
performed rune exercises and invocations. Supplementary practices 
included rune-yodelling and rune-grips, whereby the hand and 
fingers were used to form a particular rune in the course of 
meditation. Rummer’s writings made frequent reference to List and 
Gorsleben and were illustrated with pictures of the grail and a ‘Nordic’ 
temple. 20 Both Kummer and Marby were censured by Wiligut in his 
capacity as Himmler’s counsellor on magical and religious subjects 
for bringing the holy Aryan heritage into disrepute and ridicule and 
this criticism may have led to Marby’s harsh treatment in the Third 
Reich. 21 

Georg Lomer (1877-1957) was yet another occultist in the volkisch 
tradition, but his teachings were involved with astrology rather than 
rune occultism. Born on 12 September 1 877 at Loosten near Wismar, 
Lomer qualified as a physician before coming into contact with the 
theosophical movement in Germany after the First World War. While 
his earliest publications concerned a critique of Christianity, his 
writings between 1920 and 1925 were devoted to alternative forms of 
medical diagnosis and treatment based on dream-interpretation, 
auto-suggestion, and palmistry. It was not until the middle of the 
decade that his astrological interests became evident. In 1925 he 
contributed an astrological and graphological supplement, together 
with the famous astrologer Elsbeth Ebertin, to the old-established 
theosophical periodical Zum Licht. By 1 929 he had taken the magazine 
over, publishing it from Hanover as Asgard and sub-titled ‘a fighting 
sheet for the gods of the homeland’. His burgeoning tendency 
towards a pagan world-view was manifest in Hakenkreuz und Sowjetstem 
(1925), a short treatise pondering the deeper meanings of these 
symbols and their movements, and in Die Goiter der Heimat ( 1927), which 
fused a new Germanic religion with astrological ideas. In common 
with the other post-war Aryan occultists, Lomer essentially used 
occult materials to illuminate the forgotten Aryan heritage. Contri- 
butors to Asgard included Marby, Ernst Wachler, a pre-war List Society 
member and a pioneer of open-air volkisch theatre, and Gregor 
Schwartz-Bostunitsch, a mystical anti-communist and conspiracy- 
theorist. 

The wide range and confusing variety of racist occultism during the 
years of the Republic and the Third Reich might tempt one to dismiss 
the phenomenon as a crankish outgrowth of a larger occult movement 
in German society during a troubled period in history. While it is 
undeniably true that these astrologers, rune magicians, and Edda 



162 




THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

mystics were occultists, to leave the matter there is to fail to 
understand the basic ideological and political motive of this special 
kind of occultism. All these thinkers were united in a profound 
reaction to the contemporary world. They perceived the German 
Republic as vulgar, corrupt, and the symbol of defeat. As cultural 
pessimists they lifted their eyes from the frustrations and disappoint- 
ments of the present to behold a vision of high Aryan culture in a 
fabulous prehistoric past. Astrology, the myths of the Edda and the 
runes, whether mysteriously whispered or cut as strange magical 
characters, all represented a marvellous link with that golden age. 
They were also the promissory tokens of a new era, in which magic, 
mystical vision, and world-power would be restored to all true-born 
Germans. 



163 




13 



Herbert Reichstein 
and Ariosophy 



When Lanz von Liebenfels first coined the term ‘Ariosophy’ in 1915, 
his familiarity with contemporary occultism was already considerable. 1 
Astrology, as it had developed before and during the First World War, 
reprints of Nostradamus’s prophecies, works on premonitions, 
telepathy, and psychical research, all combined to provide Lanz with a 
compendium of modern occultism. After the war, Lanz was absorbed 
in a study of astrology, which bore fruit in his Praktisch-empirisches 
Handbuch der ariosophischen Astrologie, completed in August 1923. On 
finding a new publisher in October 1925, Lanz wrote a formal 
statement of his doctrine. He summarized the basic tenets of 
Ariosophy as a belief in a quasi-monist ‘pan-psychic’ energy, identical 
with God, which animated the entire universe but found its most 
perfect manifestation in the blond-haired, blue-eyed Aryan. He 
reiterated the familiar canon that all cultural achievement in the world 
could be traced to an Aryan origin. Lanz stated the basic concern of 
Ariosophy as the study of differences between the ‘blonds’ and the 
‘darks’, while emphasizing the importance of such auxiliary sciences 
as palmistry, astrology, heraldry, the doctrine of periods, the study of 
names and a related form of cabbalism. He claimed that heraldic 
devices and names were the visible and audible hieroglyphs, in which 
the Aryan ancestors had cryptically recorded the history and karma of 
their families. Palmistry and astrology provided a similar means of 
studying the Aryan soul. 2 

This endorsement of occult sciences, especially palmistry and 
name-cabbalism, is significant for two reasons. In the first place, it 
indicates his friendly collaboration with a circle of racist character- 
ologists around the publisher Herbert Reichstein from 1925 until 
1929, when he withdrew to devote himself fully to the Ordo Novi 
Templi; secondly, Lanz profited from this contact inasmuch as he 



164 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 



gathered fresh materials for his doctrine from the burgeoning post- 
war occult movement, which was developing special studies in 
astrology, graphology, palmistry, yoga, dream-interpretation, and 
many forms of regimen conducive to health and personal happiness. 
Significant figures in this milieu were Gustav Meyrink, Franz Spunda, 
and Peryt Shou, who wrote novels with occult themes, and a larger 
group of writers, who wrote specialist studies in occult science. The 
publishing house of Johannes Baum at Pfullingen provided a forum 
for such studies in the context of its New Thought series: between 
1 920 and 1 925, Baum commenced the issue of at least four book- 
series, which popularized such topics as homoeopathy, meditation, 
breathing-exercises, yoga, esoteric Christianity, and oriental religions 
in pamphlets by Karl Otto Schmidt, Georg Lomer, Willy Adelmann- 
Huttula, Hans Hanig, Heinrich Jurgens, and others. If one considers 
the continued publication and influence of several theosophical 
periodicals and books together with the output of Baum, it is clear that 
there existed a rich crop of German occult literature in the years 
immediately following the military defeat and domestic collapse of the 
country. 3 In this context post-war Ariosophy assumes the status of a 
particular strand in a varied and colourful ideological subculture, 
which was principally concerned with the anxieties and uncertainties 
of individuals in a period of cultural disruption. 

The nature of Herbert Reichstein’s peculiar contribution to this 
subculture is best understood through an account of his colleagues. 
The historical origins of his movement are found in a Berlin group of 
occultists which formed around 1920. The chief figures in this group 
were Ernst Issberner-Haldane, a palmist; Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann, 
an astrologer; Robert H. Brotz, a graphologist, and Wilhelm Wulff, an 
astrologer whom Heinrich Himmler consulted in the last weeks of the 
Second World Ward According to Issberner-Haldane, who called this 
company the ‘Swastika-Circle’, Wehrmann was an ardent supporter of 
Guido von List’s speculations about the ancient Germanic priest- 
kings. Born on 6 February 1889 and of Friesian descent, Wehrmann 
had served as an artillery captain in the war. He was regarded as an 
expert in ancient Nordic history and runology, and also versed in 
astrology, numerology, and the study of karma. 5 Another acquaintance 
recalled his passionate dedication to the cause of his Volk and his desire 
to save the heroic Aryans through the extermination of inferior races. 
Although he had allegedly first discovered the theories of Lanz after 
the war, he was credited with an assiduous study of mystical and occult 
texts after 1920. 6 These reports are corroborated by a later, un- 



165 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

sympathetic record of his early occult studies. His first publication, Die 
Wirkung der Sonne in den zwolf Tierkreisen [The Influence of the Sun in the 
Twelve Houses of the Zodiac ] (1923), constituted an unacknowledged 
plagiarism of an English text, which I ssberner- Haldane had translated 
for him. 7 Wehrmann first collaborated with Reichstein in late 1925, 
and wrote two numbers in his book-series, Ariosophische Bibliothek, in 
1926. 8 

Issberner-Haldane’s life history is more accessible than that of 
Wehrmann, since he wrote an autobiography. According to this 
account, Issberner-Haldane was born on 1 1 June 1886 in Kohlbergon 
the Baltic Sea. His interest in palmistry was allegedly first aroused in 
boyhood, when an elder brother bought him a book on the subject. In 
1900 he was apprenticed to a businessman in Kohlberg, where he 
remained until he was eighteen years old. After a short period of 
military service, he worked in his uncle’s tobacco-business at Berlin, 
later managing a branch in Thuringia. In summer 1910 Issberner- 
Haldane realized his long-cherished desire to emigrate to Australia, in 
order to escape the confines of Germany, the culture of which he 
despised as narrow, philistine, and militaristic. The account of his 
outward voyage from Bremerhaven via Suez and Colombo is cast in 
the style of a Bildungsroman, whereby the young emigrant meets several 
interesting individuals, who harbour anti-Semitic and racist ideas. 
Paragini, a sculptor at Genoa, pronounced upon the importance of 
racial features for his art, and denied the existence of any creativity 
among the Jews. Back on board, Dr Jeffersen, a Scottish gentleman, 
was presented as an astrologer with an interest in the writings of Lanz; 
Mr Hewalt, another Briton, was also well versed in Lanz’s neo- 
manichaean racism, and displayed a wide knowledge of sexology and 
several branches of occultism. In Ceylon Issberner-Haldane had an 
opportunity to consult an Indian fortune-teller and witnessed the feats 
of an old fakir. The account of these encounters and experiences was 
supposed to document the gradual dawning of the importance of 
racism and occultism in Issberner-Haldane’s mind, while he continued 
to develop his studies in palmistry. 9 

After working from autumn 1910 until early 1 9 1 2 on various farms 
in the outback of New South Wales and South Australia, Issberner- 
Haldane travelled to South America. In Rio dejaniero he noticed the 
brothels were full of girls with Aryan features, clear evidence of a 
Jewish world-conspiracy to debase the female youth of the superior 
race. While travelling up the River Amazon to Manaos, Issberner- 
Haldane composed a dissertation on palmistry, for which he received 



166 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 

the title Professor honoris causa from an unnamed and probably bogus 
university. While visiting Peru he wandered upon the Andes, where he 
experienced a mystical trance bringing initiation into the mysteries 
and higher meaning of human existence; he also received esoteric 
instruction from Devaswara Lama, an itinerant Persian sage. 10 Returning 
to Australia, he worked on farms in Queensland until spring 1914, 
when he decided to travel to the United States via Germany. He broke 
his journey at Colombo, in order to visit the holy city of Benares. Here 
he met a yogi called Ramachiro, who explained the theory of the 
human aura, before conjuring a series of visions showing scenes in the 
lives of Issberner-Haldane’s former incarnations during antiquity and 
the medieval period. 11 

After his arrival in Germany at the end of July 1914, Issberner- 
Haldane intended to visit relatives before travelling on to the United 
States. With the outbreak of international hostilities, he was interned 
as an Australian citizen and spent the ensuing four years in prison- 
camps at Hassenberg, Holzminden, and Ruhleben. Following his 
release in November 1918, I ssberner- Haldane went to live in Berlin, 
where he opened a palmist practice. Here he met his new colleagues in 
the post-war German occult subculture. Although still tempted to 
found a racist utopia in Queensland or California, he remained in 
Berlin, where he published his first text on palmistry inl921.Inl926 
he began a quarterly periodical Die Chiromantie, which was advertised 
as the official organ of the Association of Palmists in Germany. 12 He 
first became associated with Reichstein in late 1925, while his 
periodical was absorbed by that of the latter in late 1 929. He joined the 
ONT in early 1927 after meeting Lanz in either Vienna or Budapest. 
He subsequently opened a racist commune, the Svastika-Heim, near 
Arkona on the Isle of Rugen which assumed the status of an ONT 
house. 13 

Herbert Reichstein, the publicist responsible for capturing these 
and other individuals for his periodical and characterological institute, 
was born on 25 January 1 892 at Haynau in Silesia, but almost nothing 
is known about his youth or experiences. In October 1925 he was 
approached by Lanz, who asked him to become his publisher. 14 
Reichstein agreed and simultaneously announced himself the director 
of the Deutsche Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur Menschenkenntnis und Menschenschicksal, 
based at Oestrich im Rheingau. He conceived of this association as a 
mutual aid group and working forum for all occultists concerned with 
the characterological and divinatory sciences in a racist context, 
including astrology, graphology, phrenology, ‘psycho-physiognomy’, 



167 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

and palmistry. The organ of the association was his Zeitschrift fiir 
Menschenkenntnis und Menschenschicksal, which published articles by 
occultists together with advertisements for their private consultation. 

In an introductory article Reichstein outlined the objectives of his 
association. Given the chaos caused by the lost war and political 
upheavals, he claimed that a soundly based science of human 
character was essential, in order that individuals might prepare 
themselves better for their fate and learn how to make the best of it. 
Reichstein denied that he was peddling a form of fortune-telling and 
emphasized the functions of such a science as a means of determining 
one’s own character and that of others, thus providing information on 
the likely outcome of individual action in an increasingly complex 
world, which demanded more and more significant decisions on the 
part of the individual. The entire project stood squarely upon the basis 
of a racist Weltanschauung , according to which the members of the 
association regarded themselves as Aryans and pledged themselves to 
the advancement of racial purity. 1 5 Reichstein was clearly appealing to 
a market amongst those whose sense of uncertainty and disorder had 
led them to seek an occult key to the solution of their problems and the 
promotion of success in their personal and business affairs. Reichstein’s 
Ariosophy thus grafted the racist canon on to a body of mantle lore, 
the demand for which was frankly admitted to be the result of post-war 
tribulations. 

In the first issue of the periodical, dated October 1925, Reichstein 
announced the collaboration of recognized occultists in his project, 
including Issberner-Haldane, Lanz von Liebenfels, Wilhelm Wulff, 
and G. W. Surya. 16 In December 1925 he began the issue of a book- 
series, Ariosophische Bibliothek, which proposed to publicize Lanz’s 
theories in a wide field ranging from astrology to heraldry, while 
bringing this kind of ‘practical self-realization’ to its readers. A notice 
in the first number indicated that Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann, 
Herbert Gerstner, and Reinhold Ebertin, the astrologer, had joined 
his association. 17 The second number of his periodical appeared in 
February 1926 as Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung, 
while the prolix title of his institute was changed to the Ariosophical 
Society, in order to stress its patronage of Aryan occult sciences for the 
benefit of Aryans. He had meanwhile moved to Diisseldorf-Unterrath. 
In the course of 1926 other contributors to the periodical included 
Robert H. Brotz, Karl Kern, Walter Horst, Theodor Czepl, Detlef 
Schmude, G. Engelhardt, Freiherr Stromer von Reichenbach, an 
authority on occult cycles, which he had systematized into his own 



168 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 

science of historionomy, Prince Max von Lowenstein, Edmund von 
Wecus, and Ernst Tiede. 18 By the end of 1927 these contributors had 
been augmented by Lanz’s Hungarian contacts, Paul Horn and 
Wilhelm Tordai von Sziigy. 

In 1928, Reichstein acquired two more important contributors, 
both of whom deserve detailed introduction. Gregor Schwartz- 
Bostunitsch was a Russian emigre , whose direct personal experience of 
the Revolution had lent his thought a virulendy anti-Bolshevik stamp 
coupled with an unwavering belief in a Jewish world-conspiracy. 19 
Born on 1 December 1883 at Kiev, Grigorij Bostunic was of mixed 
parentage: his father was descended from a patrician family in Riga, 
while his maternal grandparents were Serbian and Bavarian. Because 
of this grandmother’s family connection, the young Bostunic visited 
Germany regularly. After qualifying as a lawyer in Kiev in 1908, 
Bostunic turned to literary pursuits on a full-time basis, interests 
which he had already cultivated as a student. In 1910 he established 
his own newspaper, Der Siidkopeken, which was running to a daily 
edition of 100,000 copies by 1914. In this year he became Professor for 
Theatrical and Literary History at the Lisenko Institute and later 
assumed the directorship of the Railway Theatre at Kiev. The military 
collapse of Russia and the Revolution signalled the end of this 
academic and literary career. An ardent opponent of the Reds, 
Bostunic was active as an anti-Bolshevik agitator and speaker in towns 
captured by the Whites under Generals Denekin and Wrangel. This 
political activity also brought him into contact with the idea of a 
Jewish-Masonic-Bolshevik conspiracy and its alleged world- programme, 
the Protocols of the Elders of Zion. 20 In 1920 Bostunic was condemned 
to death in contumaciam by the Bolsheviks, but he was able to flee to 
Bulgaria. 

After fleeing his native country, Bostunic began a life characterized 
by personal roodessness and a search for new values to sustain him. 
This search led him to occultism. He referred to a meeting with his 
first teacher in transcendental matters in the Caucasus during 
1917/18, and also to his contacts among Bulgarian theosophists in 
1920. James Webb has argued that the Caucasian teacher was most 
probably G. I. Gurdjieff, while the Bulgarian theosophists were almost 
certainly associated with the ‘Master’ Petr Deunov, who had blended 
Blavatsky’s esoteric racism with a vision of Slav messianism. 21 After an 
abordve attempt to return to Russia in October 1920 Bostunic lived in 
Belgrade. During the next two years he travelled in Yugoslavia, 
lecturing on the Jewish-Masonic conspiracy to disgrunded German 



169 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



nationalists in the former Austrian provinces of the new state. His first 
book, Freemasonry and the Russian Revolution , was published in Russian 
at Novi Sad in 1922, appearing subsequently in extracts in German 
nationalist and right-wing periodicals between 1923 and 1926. In 
August 1 922 Bostunic emigrated to Germany, where he again lectured 
on conspiracy-theories. According to his view of the post-war world, 
all undesirable change and disorder could be traced to the malevolent 
wiles of aJewish-Masonic- Bolshevik conspiracy. Nor had his interest 
in occultism flagged. In 1923 he became an enthusiastic Anthropo- 
sophist, but by 1929 he had reviled Rudolf Steiner’s movement as 
another agent of the nefarious conspiracy. Such a specific reversal of 
opinion did not modify his fundamentally manichaean and occult 
vision of history. Following his naturalization as a German citizen in 
1924, he changed his name to Schwartz-Bostunitsch. He first en- 
countered Herbert Reichstein at Diisseldorf during winter 1926. 
Reichstein quickly recognized his burning sense of mission and 
secured his collaboration with the Ariosophical Society. In February 
1928 he was quoted as being available to lecture on the relationship 
between the Russian and German soul and hailed as an expert on 
secret and supranational powers. 22 

Besides his involvement in the ariosophical movement, Schwartz- 
Bostunitsch was active in Nazi political circles. After working for 
Alfred Rosenberg’s Weltdienst news agency in the 1920s, he then 
switched his allegiance to the rising SS. Despite his age, deafness and a 
heart ailment, Schwartz-Bostunitsch was determined to serve the new 
Germany to the limits of his ability. He travelled widely as alectureron 
Freemasonry, the Jews, and other conspiracies to Nazi organizations 
in Germany and later in the occupied countries; he also wished to 
endow a proposed institute for conspiracy studies with his own library 
of 40,000 volumes on such topics. His letters to Himmler during the 
1930s express fanatical dedication to the German racial mission and 
his SS patron. Owing to his unorthodox ideas he was barred from 
lecturing in uniform, but was nevertheless appointed an honorary SS 
‘professor’ in 1942. He and his wife, together with the library, were 
evacuated in early 1944 from Berlin to Schloss Gneisenau at 
Erdmannsdorf (Riesengebirge) in Silesia for safety’s sake. Later that 
year Schwartz-Bostunitsch was promoted SS-Standartenfiihrer 
(colonel) upon the personal recommendation of Himmler. 23 His 
unique political career had taken him from anti-Semitism in pre- 
revolutionary Russia to a wholehearted identification with Nazi 
Germany. 



170 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 

The other contributor, whom Reichstein won for the Ariosophical 
Society in 1928, was Rudolf John Gorsleben. From January 1927 
Gorsleben’s periodical had appeared under the titl eArische Freiheit; in 
January 1928 it was amalgamated with Reichstein’s characterological 
periodical, which was now entitled Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform. His peculiar brand of occultism, which discerned Aryan 
symbols in both the natural and human realms, is witnessed by his 
articles during this year: ‘Arische Schau ist Urschau’, ‘Der radioaktive 
Mensch’, ‘Beitrag zur Christosmythe’, ‘Hag-All-Rune und Cheops- 
pyramide’, "Runen-Raunen-Rechten-Rat’. 21 In this respect, Gorsleben 
was closer to the Listian tradition than was Reichstein. The collaboration 
between the two was short-lived and Gorsleben resumed independent 
publication of his periodical in 1929. He completed his occult studies 
with the masterpiece Hoch-Zeit der Menschheit (1930) and died, com- 
paratively young, on 23 August 1930. 25 During the late 1920s, he had 
been affiliated as Fra Rig to the ONT priory of Staufen. 26 

As Reichstein had stated in early 1926, the Ariosophical Society 
intended to place the findings of characterological and mantic science 
at the disposal of all deserving Aryans, who were beset by a sense of 
chaos and uncertainty in the post-war world. In August 1928 a 
statement was published which emphasized the status of ariosophical 
characterologists as heirs to the hierophantic tradition of th tArmanen- 
schaft. At Pforzheim, where Reichstein now had his base, the Neue 
Kalandsgesellschafi (NKG), was proclaimed. The new title of the association 
was felt by members to have a more Listian tone. The task of this body, 
according to Wehrmann and Reichstein, was ‘the realization of the 
will of the old Germanic initiates, the priest- kings or Armanen in our 
own age’. 27 There followed a list of collaborators, which included the 
new names of Franz Friedrich von Hochberg, Professor Morawe, 
songmaster Schwartz, Konrad Duensing, and Hermann Wieland, the 
volkisch historian of Atlantis. Lecture tours of the NKG for the 
forthcoming winter were announced: Wehrmann was available to give 
courses on karmic astrology and Ariosophy; Gregor Schwartz- 
Bostunitsch on Freemasonry and Bolshevism; Issberner-Haldane on 
palmistry and yoga (on which he had published a text-book in June 
1928); Robert Brotz on graphology; Herbert Reichstein on Ariosophy, 
astrology and name-cabbalism. The latter science was based upon the 
Jewish notion of correspondences between letters and numbers, 
albeit in a very simple and popular form: the sum of the numerical 
equivalents of the letters in a person’s name allegedly yielded 
information regarding his nature and destiny. 28 The intellectual 



171 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

leadership of the NKG remained in the hands of Lanz von Liebenfels, 
who had already contributed ‘ariomantic’ studies of Guido von List, 
Ernst Issberner-Haldane, and Benito Mussolini. 29 

During the years from 1929 until 1931 the NKG did succeed in 
publicizing ariosophical ideas in many German towns through 
lectures and meetings. The Christmas celebrations of the NKG group 
at Heidelberg on 29 December 1928 were reported with enthusiasm, 
while a new NKG branch was inaugurated on 10 January 1929 at 
Stuttgart, following a well-received lecture by Reichstein. 30 In March 
1929 an ambitious programme of lecture tours was announced, with 
visits to Karlsruhe, Dresden, Erfurt, Magdeburg, Vienna, and Buda- 
pest. 31 During the summer Reichstein made the acquaintance of Grete 
Steinhoff, who allegedly read the character of a person from their 
names by a ‘mediumistic’ method in contrast to Reichstein’s cabbalistic 
procedure. Following their meeting Grete Steinhoff became a member 
of the NKG lecturing staff. In November she and Reichstein planned a 
joint lecture tour with visits to Cologne, Kassel, Mannheim, Mainz, 
Nuremberg, Ansbach, Munich, and Vienna. 32 Another group of 
characterologists at Dresden, the Zirkel fur praktische Menschenkenntnis, 
under the leadership of Georg Richter, an occult author with an 
interest in magnetic healing and telepathy, declared its amalgamation 
with the NKG in November 1929. This group convened regular 
meetings through the winter and during 1930; associates included 
Alfred Richter, a herbalist, and Kurt Hartmann, a bookseller who had 
undertaken the distribution of Reichstein’s periodical in Northern 
and Eastern Germany. 33 

Towards the end of 1929 internal tensions within the Reichstein 
group erupted with the resignation of Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann 
from the NKG. The signs of this rupture had been ominously 
increasing sincejanuary 1929, when Wehrmann assumed the editor- 
ship of the periodical after having moved to Pforzheim from Berlin. 
References to his unpractical management and his domineering style 
of leadership in the NKG, which he took over in February, indicate a 
strain in his relationship with Reichstein, which probably led to his 
removal from editorial office at the end of August 1929. It is also 
possible that Wehrmann felt sufficiently encouraged by the popularity 
of his masterpiece in multi-disciplinary fortune-telling Dein Schicksal 
(1929) to devote himself independendy to private practice. 34 A legal 
action between Reichstein and Wehrmann, accompanied by 
denunciations from Issberner-Haldane, records the rapid alienation 
of Wehrmann from his former friends during 1930. 35 



172 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 

Wehrmann subsequently indulged in a cult of right-wing revolution- 
ary activism by harking back to his wartime service as a ‘frontline 
soldier’ and organizing the Pforzheim branch of the National Socialist 
Sturmabteilung (SA). Despite this new identification with the freebooter 
spirit, prevalent among the Freikorps between 1918 and 1923 and 
again after the economic crash of 1 929, Wehrmann was still preoccupied 
with occultism. This unusual ideological mixture was demonstrated 
by his own periodical Der Wehrmann (1930-3), which declared its 
championship of ‘Gothic spiritual life’, German mysticism, and 
eugenics in the sense of a ‘frontline struggle’. Since Wehrmann’s 
earlier writings had often embraced a violently millenarian doctrine, 
calling for a destruction of all racial inferiors and the establishment of 
a Greater Germanic Empire, he may be considered one of the few 
racist occultists who turned from literary apocalyptic to military 
activism. Wehrmann remained at Pforzheim, where he lost everything 
in an air-raid during February 1945. He contracted pneumonia and 
died in Calw on 19 April 1945. 36 

In April 1931 Reichstein moved his publishing house from 
Pforzheim to Pressbaum in the Wienerwald. At this time he published 
a new appeal for the co-ordination of all ariosophically inclined 
groups or persons in an Ariosophische Kulturzentrale (AKZ), which was yet 
another appellation for his group of racist occultists. He claimed that 
member groups already existed in Berlin under the direction of Karl 
Kern; in Munich under Wilhelm von Arbter; in Dresden under Georg 
Richter; in Leipzig under Ludwig Gotz, and in Vienna under himself. 
From Pressbaum Reichstein enjoyed personal contact with the 
Austrian ONT in Vienna. In June 1931 an Ariosophical School was 
opened at the AKZ (now Pfalzauerstrasse 97). This school was 
advertised as a holiday pension set in the healthy and attractive 
surroundings of the Wienerwald, with morning instruction in mental 
and physical training according to ariosophical principles. Reichstein 
proposed to lecture on name-cabbalism, while visits from Karl Kern, 
Issberner- Haldane, and Alfred Judt, a specialist in biorhythms, were 
anticipated in the late summer. Kern had recently distinguished 
himself with the publication of the Handbuch der Ariosophie (1932) and 
an edited reprint of Johann Praetorius’s characterological classic, 
Mensch und Charakter (17 0 3). 37 Following its first successful summer 
season, the Ariosophical School reopened in May 1932. After the 
formal celebration of Lanz von Liebenfels’s sixtieth birthday with 
music, lectures, and ariosophical psalms on 8 May 1932, the courses 
in name-cabbalism, runic occultism, yoga and breathing-exercises, 



173 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

and ‘runic gymnastics’ began. 38 The latter speciality owed its origin to 
the writer and publicist Friedrich Bernhard Marby, who had edited his 
own astrological- ariosophical periodical, Der eigene Weg, since 1924. 
Marby believed that an individual was able to draw down beneficial 
cosmic forces upon himself by assuming postures in the form of 
prescribed runes. 39 

Reichstein’s periodical reflects the widespread interest among 
certain sections of German and Austrian society for all manner of 
health cures, revelations, reassurances, and techniques of self-realization 
in troubled times. There also existed a marked tendency to embrace 
several contemporary fringe- sciences and to adopt other forms of 
current occult beliefs, as if this eclecticism could help to bolster the 
other ingredients of the doctrine: the ‘space energy’ ( Raumkraft ) 
theories of Karl Schappeller, the discoveries of Frenzolf Schmid 
concerning the healing properties of certain hitherto unidentified 
rays, and the healing methods of unorthodox doctors were championed 
by Reichstein. 40 Eccentric cosmological theories also found acceptance: 
witness the issue devoted to Hanns Horbiger’s World Ice Theory, 41 
and Lanz’s enthusiastic review of Karl E. Neu pert’s Die Umwalzung, die 
Erde—das All (1930), which proposed a Hollow Earth Theory, whereby 
the earth’s surface was supposed to be concave, while observable 
space within this hollow sphere constituted the entire universe. 42 This 
readiness to profess a belief in abstruse and unconventional doctrines 
is most plausibly explicable as the consequence of a desire for 
ideological alliances within the subculture of occult and irrationalist 
modes of thought. 

Following the economic crash in late 1929 Reichstein and his circle 
began to take an active interest in the fortunes of the Nazi party. Lanz 
had established a precedent for the admiration of fascist movements, 
having enthused over the right-wing regimes of Spain, Italy, and 
Hungary since 1925. In early 1930, Reichstein published cabbalistic 
horoscopes for the German Republic, Adolf Hitler, and the National 
Socialist German Workers’ Party (NSDAP). While he reckoned that the 
Republic was subject to ‘saturnine influences’ and ‘black magical 
forces’, his calculations convinced him that the year would bring great 
success to Hitler and his party. 43 In April 1931 he published an 
apocalyptic number entitled ‘Das Dritte Reich!’, which, according to 
an occult threefold division of body, spirit, and soul, identified the 
National Socialist Party as the material power-factor, which would 
realize ariosophical culture and doctrine as its moving spirit- and 
soul-factors. This abstruse division of roles was allegedly based on 



174 




HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 



Lanz’s Bibliomystikon , the ‘Attalantic’ revelational scriptures supposedly 
dating from 85,000 BC and discovered by Frenzolf Schmid, and the 
astrological writings of Georg Lomer. In spring 1932 Reichstein 
hailed Hitler as ‘an instrument of God’. 44 This mood of apocalyptic 
expectation was given further force by a series of articles by Ernst 
Lachmann, who sought to predict the future of Germany during the 
period from 1930 to 1932 on the basis of the ‘historionomy’ of 
Stromer von Reichenbach. 45 After the Nazi seizure of power in 
Germany, Reichstein moved in April 1933 from his Austrian base to 
Berlin, in order ‘to be at the centre of the revival of a nationally 
awakened Germany’. 46 At the capital he and Karl Kern began the 
publication of Arische Rundschau [Aryan Review ], a weekly newspaper 
which professed the struggle againstjudah, Rome, and Freemasonry 
in the context of ariosophical racism and occult predictions. Reichstein 
subsequendy issued a book-series, Das Weistum des Volk.es [ The Wisdom of 
the Volk \ (1934-5), which embraced a ‘religion of blood kinship’. 
Reichstein died in relative obscurity at Freiburg in 1944. 47 

The achievement of Reichstein’s characterological group and 
periodical remains the modest popularization of ariosophical ideas 
among small circles in German cities, an activity which maintained its 
appeal even during the so-called years of stability from 1924 to 1929, 
but which peaked between 1929 and 1933 as the sense of domestic 
strife sharpened with economic recession and political polarization. 
In this context the ariosophical lecture tours were typical of a 
widespread and heterogeneous upsurge of revivalists, quacks, and 
confidence men. Rudolf Olden, a contemporary journalist, has 
described the antics of sectarians, inventors, and even alchemists, who 
formed the ranks of these wonder-workers. They found their credulous 
converts not only among the poor and ignorant, but also among 
industrialists, generals, and ex-royalty. 48 Sefton Delmer has written 
that the shock of Germany’s defeat, the inflation, the get-rich-quick 
boom that followed stabilization, the influx of foreign money, and the 
ensuing economic crash, all combined to produce an atmosphere of 
unreality, which encouraged the emergence of a caste of ‘miracle 
men’. 49 Reichstein’s advertisements for revelational books, horoscopes, 
and other mantic consultations, special medical preparations, soaps, 
salves, and toothpastes, no less his warning against competitive 
‘charlatans’, demonstrate his membership of this caste. The statements 
of the Reichstein circle regarding their indebtedness to Lanz von 
L.iebenfels all expressed gratitude for their salvation from a meaning- 
less life and depression. 50 Ariosophy was a single element in a diffuse 



175 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



subculture geared to the alleviation of stress and disappointment 
among individuals who felt a profound betrayal of their expectations 
and cultural values during the final years of the German Republic. 



176 




14 



Karl Maria Wiligut 

The Private Magus of Heinrich Himmler 



The Armanists, Ariosophists, and rune occultists we have encountered 
so far all conform to a certain sectarian stereotype. Their doctrines 
cited exalted and superhuman ancestors, whose ancient gnostic rule 
had brought the Aryans wisdom, power, and prosperity in a prehistoric 
age until it was supplanted by an alien and hostile culture. These 
ancestors were supposed to have encoded their salvation-bringing 
knowledge in cryptic forms (e.g. runes, myths, and traditions), which 
could be deciphered ultimately only by their spiritual heirs, the 
modern sectarians. List, Lanz von Liebenfels, Gorsleben, and others 
attracted disciples with the lure of such doctrines, which were 
intensively disseminated within the sect, while certain of their ideas 
and symbols filtered through to wider social groupings. These men 
thus contributed importantly to the mythological mood of the Nazi 
era, but they cannot be said to have direcdy influenced the actions of 
persons in positions of political power and responsibility. 

Karl Maria Wiligut ( 1 8 6 6- 1 946) , the so-called Rasputin of H immler, 
did achieve such influence. By virtue of his alleged possession of 
ancestral memory and an inspired representation of archaic Germanic 
traditions, he became the favoured mentor of Reichsftihrer-SS Heinrich 
Himmler on mythological subjects and was given an official assignment 
for prehistorical research in the SS between 1933 and 1939. During the 
period of his service he was promoted from SS-Hauptsturmftihrer 
(captain) to SS-Brigadefiihrer (brigadier) upon the personal recom- 
mendation of Himmler. Consulted by his patron on a wide range of 
issues, Wiligut’ s influence extended to the design of the Totenkopfring 
(death’s head ring) worn by members of the SS, the conception of the 
Wewelsburg as the order-castle of the SS, and the adoption of other 
ceremonial designed to bestow a traditional aura upon the SS ideology 
of elitism, racial purity, and territorial conquest. But who was Karl 



177 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Maria Wiligut, and how did he come to exercise this extraordinary 
influence? 

The answer to the latter question reflects largely on the character of 
Himmler himself. Among the top leaders of the Third Reich, 
Himmler appears the most ambiguous personality, motivated 
simultaneously by a capacity for rational planning and by unreal 
fantasies. His zeal for order, punctuality, and administrative detail, 
and the pedantic impression of an ‘intelligent primary school teacher’, 
were seemingly belied by his enthusiasm for the utopian, the romantic 
and even the occult. 1 It was Himmler’s idealistic imagination which 
led to a visionary conception of the SS and its future role: his black- 
uniformed troops would provide both the bloodstock of the future 
Aryan master-race and the ideological elite of an ever-expanding 
Greater Germanic Reich. Himmler busied himself from 1930 
onwards with various projects designed to express the moral purpose 
and ideological mission of the SS. The marriage regulations of 1931, 
his plans for an SS officers’ college at the Wewelsburg in 1933, and his 
close collaboration with Richard Walther Darre, the chief Nazi 
theorist of ‘blood and soil’, are representative of these projects. In 
1 935 he established with Darre the Ahnenerbe, an initially independent 
institute, with a mandate to pursue research into Germanic prehistory 
and archaeology. The Ahnenerbe was subsequently incorporated into 
the SS, its academic staff carrying SS rank and wearing SS uniform. 2 It 
is only within this context of Himmler’s quest for Germanic roots to 
underpin his SS ideology that one can understand his patronage of the 
66-year-old volkisch occultist Karl Maria Wiligut. 

Wiligut was born on 10 December 1.866 in Vienna. 3 Both his father 
and his grandfather had served as officers in the Austrian army and the 
eldest son followed this family tradition. At the age of fourteen he 
began attending the imperial cadet school at Vienna-Breitensee and in 
December 1884 he joined the 99th infantry regiment at Mostar in 
Herzegovina. He was promoted second lieutenant in November 
1888, lieutenant in 1892, and captain in 1903. During this early period 
of his military career, he served with the 99th, 88th and 47th infantry 
regiments in various parts of the Habsburg empire. As early as the 
turn of the century Wiligut had demonstrated some literary ambition 
with the publication of verse, typically characterized by the celebration 
of nature, mythological subjects, and regimental history. His treat- 
ment of mythology was explicitly nationalistic in Seyfrieds Runen ( 1 903), 
a collection of poems devoted to the legends surrounding the 
Rabenstein at Znaim on the Austrian-Moravian border. Wiligut’s 



178 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



introduction referred to the ‘Germanic origin’ of place-names and 
reflected the mood of contemporary folklore studies by Franz 
Kiessling and Guido List. The book was published by Friedrich 
Schalk, who had also issued some of List’s early work. At this time 
Wiligut was described in his military files as having good social 
connections, which may be a reference to his membership in the 
Schlarraffia, a quasi-masonic lodge which he had joined at Gorz in 
1889, attaining the grade of Knigbt and office of Chancellor prior to 
his resignation in 1909. His lodge-name was Lobesam which also 
appeared on the title-page of his book. However, there is no evidence 
that this lodge was allied to the Pan-German movement, nor does 
Wiligut appear to have been associated with any other nationalist 
organization in imperial Austria. 

In May 1912 Wiligut was promoted to major and was still serving 
with the 47th infantry regiment at the outbreak of war. In October 
1 9 1 4 he became a staff officer in the 30 th infantry regiment, witnessing 
action against the Russian army in the Carpathians along the north- 
eastern flank of the empire. Following an exhausting campaign during 
which he was either in battle or on long night-marches, Wiligut was 
promoted to lieutenant-colonel and transferred back to Graz, to 
organize reinforcements for the 1 4th and 49th infantry regiments. He 
was then posted to the Italian front, where he held a succession of 
commands between June 1915 and the following spring. Injune 1916 
he was appointed commanding officer of the Salzburg district reserves 
and promoted to the rank of colonel in August 1917. In the course of 
the war he was decorated for bravery and highly commended by his 
senior officers. Field Marshal Daniel described him as ‘a sterling 
character ... an extremely skilful, conscientious officer . . . suitable for 
regimental command’, a judgement shared by other high-ranking 
commanders. In May 1918 Wiligut was recalled from the front in 
South Tyrol and placed in command of camps for returned soldiers at 
Zolkiew, north of Lemberg (L’vov) in the Ukraine. After nearly forty 
years’ professional military service he was discharged on 1 January 
1919 and he retired to Salzburg. 4 

Wiligut’s subsequent importance to volkisch groups and the SS 
rested on his reputation as the last descendant of a long line of 
Germanic sages, the Uiligotis of th cAsa-Uana-Sippe, which dated back 
to a remote prehistoric era. Wiligut claimed to possess ancestral- 
clairvoyant memory, which enabled him to recall the history and 
experiences of his tribe over thousands of years. It is difficult to 
establish when Wiligut first identified with this tradition as pre-war 



179 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



documents are scarce. He claimed that he received instruction on the 
runes from his grandfather Karl Wiligut (1794-1883), and dated his 
formal initiation into the family secrets by his father from 1890; 5 a 
series of nine pagan commandments was supposedly written by him 
as early as July 1908. The only source for Wiligut’s pre-war pagan 
tradition is Theodor Czepl of the Order of the New Templars who 
evidendy knew of Wiligut around 1908 through an occult circle in 
Vienna, whose members included Willy Thaler, a cousin of Wiligut, 
his wife Marie Thaler, the well-known actress, and several ONT 
brothers. 6 It was on the basis of this former acquaintance that Lanz 
von Liebenfels gave Czepl the assignment of making renewed contact 
with Wiligut after the war, since by this time rumours of his ‘secret 
German kingship’ were current in the volkisch subculture. Czepl 
accordingly visited Wiligut on three occasions, once spending as long 
as seven weeks at his Salzburg home in the winter of 1920-1. He 
recorded his experiences with Wiligut in an extensive memorandum 
prepared for the ONT. 7 

Wiligut told Czepl that he was the bearer of a secret line of German 
royalty and showed him tomes on heraldry and his own coat-of-arms 
and family seal as proof of this claim. He obliquely stated that ‘his 
crown lay in the imperial palace at Goslar and his sword in a stone 
grave at Steinamanger’. On the basis of his ancestral-clairvoyant 
memory he described the religious practices, military organization, 
and constitutional arrangements of the ancient Germans in terms that 
also closely resembled the earlier revelations of Guido von List. But 
Wiligut also maintained that the Bible had been originally written in 
Germany; he evidendy identified with an Irminist religion, which was 
distinct from and the opponent of Wotanism, celebrating a Germanic 
god Krist, which the Christian religion had later bowdlerized and 
appropriated as its own saviour. Wiligut also welcomed Lanz’s 
intended publication of a second Ostara series for the light this might 
throw on the real Aryan origins of Christianity. Wiligut presented 
Czepl at his departure with a poem entitled ‘German Faith’, which 
fused mystical pietism with hopes of national redemption. From this 
meeting with Czepl it may be deduced that Wiligut’s doctrine blended 
the Teutonic archaism of List with the Ario-Christianity of Lanz, albeit 
in a novel form. It is also likely that his ideas about Krist influenced 
Gorsleben in the 1920s. 

These elements of Wiligut’s doctrine may be confidendy dated back 
to around 1920. Their later elaboration is best studied in the copious 
writings of his Austrian disciple, Ernst Rudiger (1885-1952), whom he 



180 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



initially met during the war and with whom he collaborated over the 
next decade. According to Rudiger, Wiligut attributed to the ancient 
Germans a history, culture, and religion of far greater antiquity than 
that generally accepted by academic prehistorians. His chronology 
began around 228,000 BC, when there were three suns in the sky and 
the earth was populated with giants, dwarves, and other supposedly 
mythical beings. History proper began for Wiligut when his ancestors, 
the Adler-Wiligoten, helped restore peaceful conditions after a long 
period of strife and thereby inaugurated the ‘second Boso culture’, 
which witnessed the foundation of the city Arual-Joruvallas (Goslar) in 
78,000 BC. Subsequent millenia were described in a detailed record of 
tribal conflicts and mass migrations to fabulous continents of theo- 
sophical tradition. Around 12,500 BC the Irminist religion of Kristwas 
proclaimed, becoming the universal faith of the Germans until it was 
challenged by the schismatic Wotanists. In 9600 BC a climax occurred 
in the continuous wars between the two religions. Baldur-Chrestos, a 
holy prophet of Irminism, was crucified by Wotanists at Goslar. 
However, the prophet escaped to Asia and the battle of faiths persisted 
over the following centuries. The Wotanists ultimately succeeded in 
destroying the Irminist sacred centre at Goslar in 1200 BC and the 
Irminists founded a new temple at the Exsternsteine near Detmold. 
But this was taken by the Wotanists in 460 before being finally sacked 
in its corrupt form by Charlemagne during his campaign against the 
pagan Saxons in the ninth century. 8 

Wiligut ascribed a continuous and important role to his ancestors in 
this account of the past. The Wiligotis had been Ueiskuinigs (wise kings), 
tracing their descent from the union of the Asen (air gods) and Wanen 
(water gods) when the earth was still populated by mythical beings. 
Later the tribe ruled over a kingdom in the Burgenland, which is why 
Wiligut attributed a traditional importance to Steinamanger and 
Vienna comparable to that of Goslar in his recollections from 
ancestral-clairvoyant memory. At the time of Charlemagne’s brutal 
persecution of the pagans in North Germany, the Wiliguts in that area 
were supposed to have escaped from Frankish captivity and fled to the 
Faroe Islands and thence to Central Russia. There the Wiliguts 
founded the town ofVilnaas the capital of an extensive Gothic empire, 
whose existence had been subsequendy obliterated by hostile Christian 
and Russian interests. Finally, the family migrated in 1242 to 
Hungary, where they enjoyed respite from the vigilance of the 
Catholic Church and the enmity of the Wotanists as a result of the 
chaotic conditions created by the Tartar invasions. Throughout its 



181 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

history, the Wiligut family had remained staunchly loyal to the 
Irminist faith. Among other notable members of his tribe, Wiligut 
mentioned Armin the Cherusker and Wittukind, both heroic figures 
in early Germanic history. It will be evident from this epic account of 
putative genealogy and family history that Wiligut’s prehistorical 
speculations primarily served as a stage upon which he could project 
the experiences and importance of his own ancestors. 9 

In the early 1920s Wiligut became convinced that he was the victim 
of the age-old persecution of his tribe and the Irminist religion. He 
identified this modern conspiracy against him in the Catholic Church, 
Jewry, and Freemasonry, and also blamed them for the lost war and 
the collapse of the Habsburg empire. In order to publicize his ideas 
among other disgruntled patriots in the new socialist Austrian 
Republic, he founded an anti-Semitic league at Salzburg and edited a 
newspaper entitled Der eiseme Besen [The Iron Broom], in which he 
fiercely attacked both the Jews and the Freemasons. At this time, 
Wiligut’s marriage came under great strain. In 1907 he had married 
Malwine Leuts von Treuenringen from Bozen, who bore him two 
daughters, Gertrud (b. 1 907) and Lotte (b.1910). A son, twinned with 
one of the daughters, had died in infancy, thereby foiling the 
traditional inheritance of secret tribal knowledge by the eldest male 
heir. Wiligut had come to resent his wife for this loss and became 
increasingly moody at home during his retirement. His wife, for her 
part, thought little of his tradition and was also incensed at Wiligut’s 
ill-advised financial guarantee of a commercial venture undertaken by 
a former officer comrade. Wiligut subsequently claimed that this man 
was another agent of the conspiracy against him. Matters abruptly 
climaxed in November 1924 when Wiligut was involuntarily committed 
to the Salzburg mental asylum, where he was certified insane and 
remained an inmate until his release in early 1927. The full report on 
his condition referred to his violence at home, including threats to kill 
his wife, grandiose projects, eccentric behaviour, and occult interests, 
before diagnosing a history of schizophrenia involving megalomaniac 
and paranoid delusions. A Salzburg court ruled him incompetent to 
administer his own affairs on the basis of this medical evidence. 10 

During his confinement Wiligut continued to correspond with 
those loyal associates whose belief in his traditions and ancestral 
memory remained unshaken. These friends were his Austrian disciples, 
Ernst Rudiger and Friedrich Teltscher at Innsbruck, and in Germany 
Friedrich Schiller (ONT) and several members of the Edda Society, 
including Werner von Billow, Richard Anders (ONT), and the 



182 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



treasurer’s wife, Kathe Schaefer- Gerdau. Thanks to their support and 
encouragement, Wiligut was able to resume his activities as a 
Germanic sage following his release from the asylum. In 1932 Wiligut 
fled his family, the stigma of Salzburg, and the state of Austria. He 
emigrated to Germany and settled in the Bogenhausen suburb of 
Munich. Continuing his ancestral researches, he now became a 
celebrity among the rune occultists of Germany. He was a welcome 
long-term guest at the home of Kathe Schaefer-Gerdau in Muhlhausen, 
where a circle known as the ‘Free Sons of the North and Baltic Seas’ 
gathered to hear his family traditions and oracular wisdom. In early 
1933 the Edda Society printed a long description and interpretation of 
Wiligut’s family seal as an outstanding example of ‘Armanist runo- 
logical heritage’. 11 During the summer of 1934 the Society began 
publishing pages of rune- rhymes, numerological wisdom, and myth- 
ological verse by Jarl Widar (Wiligut’s new nom de plume) in its 
magazine Hagai.' 2 The editorial introduction to the July number 
declared that the magazine had entered a new era and was henceforth 
committed to the dissemination of a newly-discovered source of 
wisdom. It also suggested that both List and Gorsleben might have 
been indebted to similar family traditions. 13 

Wiligut clearly recognized the sympathy between his own mythology 
and the apocalyptic hopes unleashed in Germany by the Nazi 
revolution of January 1933. So did others. His old friend Richard 
Anders, now an SS officer, introduced the old mystic to his chief 
Heinrich Himmler. The latter was evidently impressed by Wiligut’s 
ancestral-clairvoyant memory and decided to exploit as fully as 
possible this unique source of information on ancient Germanic 
religion and traditions. In September 1933 Wiligut joined the SS 
under the pseudonym Karl Maria Weisthor and was appointed head 
of a Department for Pre- and Early History within the Race and 
Settlement Main Office (Rasse- und Siedlungshauptamt) of the SS based at 
Munich. His duties here appear to have consisted in committing 
examples of his ancestral memory to paper, discussing his family 
traditions with Himmler, and being generally available to comment 
on prehistoric subjects. During 1934, his first full year of SS service, 
Weisthor found favour with his new master. Correspondence over this 
and ensuing years indicates a most cordial relationship between 
Himmler and Weisthor, even extending to the exchange of birthday 
telegrams and gifts. More importantly, Weisthor’s correspondence 
contained many items relating to the Wiligut family tradition, such as 
rhymed verse on rune-wisdom, mythological poetry, essays on 



183 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



cosmology and the epochs of world prehistory, a copy of his nine 
pagan commandments from 1 908 with a runic transliteration, and an 
Irminist paternoster in Gothic language. Most of these items were 
scrupulously initialled by Himmler and kept among his private 
papers. 14 In April 1934 Weisthor had been promoted SS-Standarten- 
fiihrer (colonel) to reflect his former rank in the imperial Austrian 
army and in October 1934 he was appointed head of Section VIII 
(Archives) at the Race and Setdement Main Office. His promotion to 
SS-Oberfuhrer (lieutenant-brigadier) followed the next month. 

In August 1934 Weisthor brought Gunther Kirchhoff, a fellow 
enthusiast for Germanic prehistory with whom he had corresponded 
since the spring, to the attention of Himmler. Gunther Kirchhoff 
(1892-1975) lived at Gaggenau near Baden-Baden in the Black Forest. 
A member of the post-war List Society at Berlin and an associate of 
Tarnhari, Kirchhoff was interested in genealogy and interpreted 
legends as reflections of actual prehistorical incident. He also speculated 
on the existence of geodetic energy-lines across whole continents. 15 
Greatly impressed by his letters, Weisthor sent the Kirchhoff corres- 
pondence to Himmler, with the excited comment that ‘there were still 
thank goodness other “initiates” besides himself who read the times 
correctly’. He also noted pregnantly that Kirchhoff used a family 
seal. 16 Within a fortnight Weisthor followed up by sending another 
Kirchhoff essay entitled ‘Rotbart von Kyffhauser’ to Himmler and 
Reichsminister Walther Darre with the vigorous recommendation 
that ‘its content was of momentous importance both with respect to 
our own prehistoric past and for its links with the present’ and asked 
the two leaders to study the piece before the Party Day in order that 
they might discuss it in detail together. 17 The essay described the 
organization of prehistoric Germany with explicit reference to List’s 
Armanenschaft. Kirchhoff claimed that ancient Europe had been ruled 
by the Great Three, namely the Uiskunig of Goslar, King Arthur of 
Stonehenge, and Ermanrich ofVineta or Vilna. Subordinate to them 
was the Great King of Thuringia, Gunther the Redbeard, whose tribe 
migrated to Scodand in 800 BC, where it became known as the 
Kirkpatrick clan. Kirchhoff deduced his own blood kinship with both 
the Gunther tribe and the Kirkpatricks on the basis of Listian 
etymology and adopted a coat-of-arms like the town arms of Erfurt in 
Thuringia to demonstrate this family link. This essay was representative 
of the fifty or so manuscripts, written on subjects ranging from the 
Nibelungs to the Rosicrucians, which Kirchhoff submitted to the 
Reichsfuhrer-SS Personal Staff and the Ahnenerbe between 1936 and 
1944. 18 



184 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



When Kirchhoff started to write about the prehistoric religious 
significance of the Murg valley near Baden-Baden in the spring of 
1936, Weisthor lost no further time in making his personal acquaintance 
and visited Gaggenau. Accompanied by Kirchhoff, Weisthor under- 
took an eight-day survey of this Black Forest district injune 1 936. His 
formal report to the SS filled 87 typed pages and included 168 
photographs of old half-timbered houses, architectural ornament 
(including sculpture, coats-of-arms, runes, and other symbols), crosses, 
inscriptions, and natural and man-made rock formations in the forest. 
On the basis of this fund of Listian relics Weisthor concluded that the 
area centring on Schloss Eberstein constituted a gigantic Irminist 
religious complex depicting the ‘eye of God in the triangle’ in place- 
names and topographical features. This religious symbol had first 
been discussed in one of his Hagai articles: the ‘revolving eye’ ( Draugh ) 
consisted of an isosceles triangle whose corners symbolized the spirit- 
point, the energy-point, and the matter-point on a circumscribing 
circle denoting karma, along which consciousness moved on its path 
of increasing transcendental awareness. While this notion appears to 
be quite specific to Weisthor, the references to occult architectural 
symbolism and the vehmgericht in his report indicate the influence of 
List or Gorsleben, most probably via Kirchhoff. Weisthor made at 
least five such land surveys around Germany, discovering a cruciform 
Irminist complex in the sacred Goslar area. 19 

Confident ofWeisthor’s patronage, Kirchhoff ultimately exhausted 
the patience of the Ahnenerbe, which Himmler had ordered to 
study his essays. One SS academic, appointed to examine a ritual 
stone at Baden-Baden and other Kirchhoff discoveries in April 1937, 
reported that Kirchhoff did not understand how to evaluate evidence, 
that his dating was absurd, and that his library contained many occult 
works by List, Koerner, and Gorsleben but almost nothing relating to 
scholarly prehistorical research. 20 When the Ahnenerbe rejected his 
essay on the Church in early 1938, Kirchhoff angrily accused the 
institute of participating in a Catholic conspiracy. Having by now had 
enough of Kirchhoff’s endless submissions, the Ahnenerbe took a 
hard line, describing him as a ‘fantasist of the worst kind’ and his work 
as ‘rubbish’ in their reports. 21 Nevertheless, Himmler still wanted to 
know why Kirchhoff was being neglected by the Ahnenerbe and took a 
great interest in his description of a hexagonal religious complex in 
the countryside around the Raidenstein near Gaggenau. Kirchhoff 
connected this stone with the family traditions of Tarnhari, whose 
alleged sixteenth-century ancestor had borne the name Lautrer von 



185 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Dofering zum Raidenstein. Himmler insisted that the recalcitrant 
Ahnenerbe pursue the matter with Kirchhoff but the proposed 
archaeological dig was postponed indefinitely at the outbreak of the 
war. 22 The real importance of this dispute is its demonstration of 
Himmler’s essential support for a lay occultist in the face of academic 
opposition from his staff in the Ahnenerbe. The fact that Weisthor and 
Kirchhoff continued to win the attention and favour of the Reichs- 
fiihrer-SS over their heads must have rankled badly with the members 
of the institute. For his part, Kirchhoff continued writing to the 
Ahnenerbe during the war. His last surviving letter to the Nazi 
authorities is a thirty-page occult treatise on the cause of German war 
reversals, addressed to Adolf Hitler via Himmler in late 1944. 23 

The development of the Wewelsburg near Paderborn as the SS 
order-castle and ceremonial centre must represent Weisthor’s most 
spectacular contribution to the Th ird Reich . During the N azi electoral 
campaign of January 1933 Himmler travelled through Westphalia, 
making his first acquaintance with ‘the land of Hermann and 
Widukind’. The mythical atmosphere of the Teutoburger Forest, a 
drive up to the Hermannsdenkmal in fog, and the romantic Greven- 
burg castle, where the Fiihrer’s party stayed overnight, impressed 
Himmler deeply and made him think of acquiring a castle in this area 
for SS purposes. 24 After two other castles had been considered in the 
course of the year, Himmler viewed the Wewelsburg with members of 
his Personal Staff on 3 November 1933 and made his choice that very 
evening. After a further visit in April, the castle was officially taken 
over by the SS in August 1934. The Wewelsburg began its new career 
as a museum and SS officers’ college for ideological education within 
the Race and Settlement Main Office, but was then placed under the 
direct control of the Reichsfiihrer-SS Personal Staff in February 1935. 
This transfer reflected the increasing importance of the castle to 
Himmler and the germination of his plans for an SS order-castle, 
comparable to the Marienburg of the medieval Teutonic Knights. 

The impetus for this changing conception of the Wewelsburg came 
almost certainly from Weisthor, who had accompanied Himmler on 
his visits to the castle. 25 Weisthor predicted that the castle was destined 
to become a magical German strongpoint in a future conflict between 
Europe and Asia. This idea was based on an old Westphalian legend, 
which had found romantic expression in a nineteenth-century poem. 26 
This described an old shepherd’s vision of a ‘Battle at the Birchtree’ in 
which an enormous army from the East would be finally beaten by the 
West. Weisthor brought this legend to Himmler’s notice, claiming 



186 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



that the Wewelsburg was the ‘bastion’ against which this ‘new Hun 
invasion’ would be broken in fulfilment of the old prophecy. Karl 
Wolff, Chief Adjutant of the Personal Staff, recalled that Himmler was 
very moved by Weisthor’s idea, which squared with his own notion of 
the SS’s future role in the defence of Europe in a coming East- West 
confrontation which he expected in one to two hundred years’ time. 27 
While it cannot be definitely proved that Weisthor influenced the 
choice of the Wewelsburg in late 1933, his interpretation of the legend 
and other discussions with Himmler contributed injportandy to the 
new conception of the Wewelsburg as an SS order-casde from 1935 
onwards. 

Weisthor also had an important influence on the development of SS 
ritual. In the course of his visits to the Wewelsburg, he established a 
warm friendship with the casde commandant, Manfred von 
Knobelsdorff. Inspired by their exchanges on religion and traditions, 
Knobelsdorff enthusiastically sought to revive the Irminist faith 
through various rituals held at the castle. These included pagan 
wedding ceremonies for SS officers and their brides, at which 
Weisthor officiated with an ivory-handled stick bound with blue 
ribbon and carved with runes, and the annual spring, harvest and 
solstice festivals for both the SS garrison and the villagers. 28 Knobels- 
dorff also closed his letters to Weisthor with the expression ‘in Irminist 
loyalty as a token of his interest in the old religion. 29 Himmler also 
commissioned Weisthor with the design of the SS Totenkopfring , a 
tangible symbol of membership in an order demanding complete 
obedience and loyalty. The ring was bestowed by Himmler personally 
and accompanied by a certificate describing its ornament and 
meaning. The ornament comprised a death’s head, the double sig- 
rune, a swastika, a hagall rune, and the rune group , which 
indicated the traditions of Weisthor. 30 The ring was moreover ritually 
linked with the Wewelsburg: in 1 938 Himmler declared that the rings 
of all dead SS men and officers were to be returned for safekeeping in a 
chest at the castle as a symbolic expression of their enduring 
community in the order. 31 Here again, symbols and rituals demonstrate 
Weisthor’s contribution to the ceremonial and pseudo-religion of 
the SS. 

Himmler’s ultimate plans for the Wewelsburg reflect its cult 
importance in the SS. In the large domed circular room of the massive 
enlarged north tower were to hang the coats-of-arms devised for dead 
SS-Gruppenfuhrer; in the vault or SS-Obergruppenfuhrer hall below 
unspecified ceremonies were envisaged. In the wings of the casde the 



187 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

study-rooms had already been named and furnished after figures 
representing a ‘nordic mythology’ such as Widukind, King Heinrich, 
Henry the Lion, King Arthur and the Grail. Area plans dating from 
between 1 940 and 1 942 provided for the relocation of the village some 
distance away and the building of an enormous architectural complex 
consisting of halls, galleries, towers, turrets, and curtain walls arranged 
in a semi-circular form on the hillside around the original medieval 
casde. Photographs of models showing the project, due for completion 
in the 1960s, suggest that Himmler dreamed of creating an SS Vatican 
on an enormous scale at the centre of a millenarian Greater Germanic 
Reich. 32 It also seems likely that this visionary city would have 
witnessed the celebration of ancient religion and traditions initially 
revealed by Weisthor in the 1930s. 

By spring 1935 Weisthor had moved from Munich to Berlin, where 
he continued his work in the Chief Adjutant’s office of the Reichsfiihrer- 
SS Personal Staff. This transfer to the top entourage indicates how 
highly Himmler valued Weisthor and their discussions together. 
According to eye witnesses, he was now busier than ever, surrounded 
by adjutants, orderlies, and the general hustle and busde of govern- 
ment at the Reich capital. An official car collected Weisthor daily from 
his private villa in exclusive Grunewald, often before he had finished 
his breakfast, in order that the elderly officer could meet a demanding 
schedule of meetings, correspondence, and travel. Frequent social 
visitors to the villa at Kaspar Theyss Strasse 33 included Heinrich 
Himmler, Joachim von Leers, Edmund Kiss, Otto Rahn, Richard 
Anders, and Friedrich Schiller. 33 Besides his involvement with the 
Wewelsburg and his land surveys in the Black Forest and elsewhere, 
Weisthor continued to produce examples of his family traditions such 
as the Halgarita mottoes, Germanic mantras designed to stimulate 
ancestral memory, a Gotos calendar with verse for 1937, and the 
design for the SS Totenkopfring. An interesting political example of his 
work is a blueprint for the re-establishment of the Irminist religion in 
Germany which detailed provisions for restrictions on the priesthood, 
the nationalization of all ecclesiastical property, and the restoration 
and conservation of ancient monuments. 34 In September 1 936 he was 
promoted SS-Brigadefuhrer (brigadier) in the Reichsftihrer-SS Personal 
Staff. 

Otto Rahn (1904-39), the gifted young author and historian, also 
worked with Weisthor during his Berlin period. Born on 18 February 
1904 at Michelstadt in Odenwald, Rahn had completed his university 
studies in literature and philology by 1928. Having become deeply 



188 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



interested in the medieval Cathars and grail legends, he researched 
and travelled widely in Provence, Catalonia, Italy, and Switzerland 
over the next five years. He ultimately fused the troubadour and 
Minnesang traditions, the Cathar heresy, and the legends of the grail to 
posit a gnostic religion of Gothic origin which had been brutally 
suppressed by the medieval Catholic Church, in his romantic history 
Kreuzzug gegen den Oral [Crusade against the Grail ] ( 1 933), which won him 
a European audience. After 1933 Rahn lived at Berlin and devoted 
himself to further studies in this vein. His quest for a Germanic 
religious tradition based on heresies and legends interested Himmler, 
who sought Rahn’s collaboration in SS-sponsored research. In May 
1935 Rahn joined Weisthor’s department as a civilian. He joined the 
SS formally in March 1936 and was promoted to SS-Unterscharfuhrer 
(NCO) the following month. The same year he undertook a research 
tour of Iceland under SS auspices and subsequently published a travel 
journal of his quest for the Cathar-Gothic tradition across Europe as 
Luzifers Hofgesinde [Lucifer’s Servants] (1937). Following four months’ 
military service with the SS-Death’s Head Division ‘Oberbayern’ at 
Dachau concentration camp in late 1937, he was granted leave to 
devote himself fully to writing until his unexplained resignation from 
theSS in February 1939. He died shortly afterwards on 13 March 1939 
due to exposure while walking on the mountains near Rufstein. 35 

Otto Rahn belongs to a European genre of romantic travel writers 
and historians. Among his triumphs of pastoral and atmospheric 
narrative are his vivid descriptions of the summer countryside in 
Hesse, the valleys of South Tyrol, the rocky fastness of Montsegur and 
the local village where he spent a snowbound winter, and the 
desolation and monotony of Iceland. While Rahn’s muse and 
middlebrow scholarship distinguish him from the whimsical Aryan 
occultists devoted to rune and megalith, there exists a certain identity 
of interests and motives between them. This common ground 
concerns the search for a lost Germanic tradition, supposedly 
obscured or destroyed by the Catholic Church and other hostile 
interests. In September 1935 Rahn wrote excitedly to Weisthor about 
the places he was visiting in his hunt for grail traditions in Germany, 
asking complete confidence in the matter with the exception of 
Himmler. 36 The attempt to discover such a tradition indicates the 
passion shared by Rahn, Weisthor and Himmler alike. All three men 
believed a secret key to ancient pagan culture could be found in the 
present. 

When the SS decided to evaluate the ideological standpoint of 



189 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Evola, the Italian idealist philosopher, Weisthor was consulted. Baron 
Julius Evola (1898-1974) preached a doctrine of elitism and anti- 
modernity based on an Aryan-Nordic tradition defined by solar 
mythology and the male aristocratic principle as opposed to the 
female principle of democracy. These ideas found expression in his 
books on racism, grail- mysticism, and archaic traditions. Not entirely 
acceptable to the official fascist party line in Italy, Evola had begun to 
seek recognition abroad: his German editions comprised Heidnischer 
Imperialismus [Pagan Imperialism] (1933) and Erhebung wider die modeme 
Welt [Revolt against the Modem World ] (1935). In early 1938 the SS started 
to investigate his ideas and Weisthor was asked to comment on a 
lecture delivered by Evola at Berlin in December 1937. Three further 
lectures were given in June 1938 and again Himmler referred the 
matter to Weisthor, with the additional request that he review Evola’s 
book on pagan imperialism from the perspective of his own traditions. 
Weisthor replied that Evola worked from a basic Aryan concept but 
was quite ignorant of prehistoric Germanic institutions and their 
meaning. He also observed that this defect was representative of the 
ideological differences between fascist Italy and Nazi Germany and 
could ultimately prejudice the permanency of their alliance. Wiligut’s 
report was evidendy respected. In due course the SS ordered that 
Evola’s activities in the Third Reich should be discouraged. 37 

The exact events leading up to Weisthor’s resignation from the SS 
remain clouded in uncertainty. It is said that the old seer’s health was 
in swift decline despite powerful medication intended to maintain his 
vitality and mental faculties; also that this very medication caused 
unfortunate changes in habit and personality, including heavy smoking 
and alcoholism. Given the jealousy surrounding Weisthor, any 
incompetence would have been quickly noted. However, Weisthor’s 
psychiatric history still remained a closely guarded secret, for his 
curriculum vitae of May 1937 had been sealed after confidential 
scrutiny. But in November 1938 Karl Wolff visited Malwine Wiligut at 
Salzburg, whereupon his earlier certification became known and a 
source of embarrassment to Himmler. In February 1939 Wolff 
informed Weisthor’s staff that the SS-Brigadefiihrer had retired on his 
own application for reasons of age and poor health and that his office 
would be dissolved. Himmler requested the return of Weisthor’s SS 
Totenkopfring , dagger, and sword, which he sentimentally kept under 
personal lock and key. Weisthor’s official retirement from the SS was 
dated 28 August 1939. 38 

The SS continued to look after Wiligut in retirement, but the final 



190 




KARL MARIA WILIGUT 



years of his life are a record of oblivion and pidable wanderings in 
wartime Germany. Elsa Baltrusch, a member of the Reichsfiihrer-SS 
Personal Staff, was appointed Wiligut’s housekeeper and they were 
allocated quarters in Aufkirchen. This soon proved too remote for 
Wiligut after being in the thick of things in Berlin, so they moved to his 
beloved Goslar in May 1940. Their accommodation at the Werderhof 
in the town was then unfortunately requisitioned as a medical research 
establishment in 1943, whereupon the couple moved to a small SS 
guest-house on the Wdrthersee in Carinthia and spent the remainder 
of the war in Austria. After being evicted and assigned to a refugee 
camp at St Johann near Velden by the English occupying forces, 
Wiligut suffered a stroke resulting in partial paralysis and loss of 
speech. He and his companion were subsequently permitted to return 
to his old family home at Salzburg, but the unhappy past made this an 
unsatisfactory arrangement for everyone concerned. Wiligut wanted 
to go back to his elective homeland Germany, so the pair travelled on 
to Baltrusch’s own family at Arolsen in December 1945. The journey 
proved too much for the old man and he was hospitalized on arrival. 
Karl Maria Wiligut died on 3 January 1946, the last of his secret line. 39 



191 




15 

Ariosophy and Adolf Hider 



THE reactionary political motives and revolutionary expectations of 
the various Armanists, Ariosophists, and rune occultists admit of 
comparison with the ideas of National Socialism. The enthusiasm of 
the Aryan occultists for Nazism has already been noted: Lanz von 
Liebenfels wrote in 1932 ‘Hitler is one of our pupils’, 1 and both 
Werner von Btilow and Herbert Reichstein applauded the advent of 
the Third Reich in their magazines. But our final question must be to 
what extent Ariosophy actually influenced Nazism. Some answers to 
this problem have already been given. The lineage of the early Nazi 
Party in respect of its sponsors, newspaper, and symbol has been 
traced to the Thule Society, the Germanenorden, and thus to the ideas 
of Guido von List. It has also been shown how Himmler officially 
patronized Karl Maria Wiligut, whose prehistorical speculations were 
rooted in the ideas of List and his Armanist epigones. In order to 
complete our enquiry, attention must now be focused on the beliefs of 
Adolf Hider and their possible debt to Ariosophy. 2 

Friedrich Heer has described the various towns where the young 
Hitler lived, commenting on their cultural atmosphere and potential 
influence upon him. In 1889 Hitler was born at Braunau am Inn, a 
riverside town on the Austrian-Bavarian border where his father 
served as an imperial customs officer. Between 1892 and 1895 his 
father was posted to Passau. The dominant baroque Catholic culture 
of this old ecclesiastical centre was visibly expressed in the cathedral, 
churches, monasteries, and chapels of the town, the ubiquitous clergy 
and the rich liturgical festivals. Heer has suggested that this ambience 
may have instilled a religious-millenarian awareness in the infant 
Hitler which later characterized his emotional outlook and world- 
view. Such an influence would have been subsequently deepened by 
his attendance at the Benedictine monastery school at Lambach from 



192 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 

1897 to 1899. H ere H itler is said to have been happy, taking an active 
part in the ceremonial and pageantry of the church which again 
dominated the face of this town. 3 The frequent depiction of village 
churches, monasteries and the monumental ecclesiastical architecture 
ofVienna in Hider’s own paintings between 1906 and 1913 provides 
further evidence of his attraction to the visual metaphor of the 
Catholic Church and its thousand-year continuity in his Austrian 
homeland. 4 This deep involvement in Catholic culture could imply 
an imaginative disposition towards the dualist-millenarian ideas of 
Ariosophy. 

Hitler’s period at Linz from 1900 to 1905 was less fortunate. The 
sophisticated urban environment put great pressure on a boy more 
used to school life in small towns and the country and his academic 
performance deteriorated. But in this town Hitler encountered 
nationalism and Pan-Germanism. Linz was close to the Czech-setded 
lands of South Bohemia and the incursion of Czech immigrants, 
business, and property interests was warily watched by the Austrian 
Germans of the town. Hitler’s history master, Dr Leopold Potsch, was 
prominent in several nationalist Vereine and also introduced his boys 
to epic periods of German history with magic lantern shows on the 
Nibelungs, Charlemagne, Bismarck, and the establishment of the 
Second Reich. Hitler was always enthusiastic for these history lessons 
and his belief in ‘Germany’ as a mother symbol of romantic Volk 
identity and imperial continuity may be traced to his school experiences 
in Linz. Heer has elicited from survivors several descriptions of 
Hitler’s childhood interest in German racial characteristics and his 
segregation of classmates into Germans and non-Germans. 5 This early 
fixation on mother Germany across the border in the context of both 
manichaean and millenarian ideas would also find an echo in the 
writings of both List and Lanz von Liebenfels. 

At a more rational level, Hider’s independent move to Vienna for 
formal artistic training was prompted by his interests and ambitions, 
but his life in the capital was fatally flawed by his failure to secure 
admission to the Academy of Fine Arts. Following his initial rejection 
in October 1907 and the death of his mother that Christmas, Hitler 
returned to Vienna in February 1908 in order to lead the life of a 
private artist-student with modest means. Together with August 
Kubizek, his boyhood friend from Linz, he enjoyed the galleries, the 
city architecture, and Wagner operas until the summer. However, his 
increasing sense of exclusion from a proper artistic career, his 
aversion to any other kind of work, and the steady depletion of his 



193 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

funds gradually vidated this idyll. In November 1908 he vanished 
from his shared lodging and henceforth lived alone. The slow descent 
into genteel poverty followed by destitution had begun. Now Hitler 
experienced the dark side of life in the city. The dingy rented rooms, 
the crowded soup-kitchens and the filthy flop-houses, the poor streets 
teeming with foreign immigrants from the provinces, and the Jews 
with their strange garb and customs, represented a fallen world. 
Vienna and the multi-racial Habsburg empire appeared to Hitler in 
his misfortune as the complete antithesis of his fairytale image of 
mother Germany and her pure national culture. In such a mood 
Hitler would have been deeply receptive to the manichaean comic- 
book dualism of blonds and darks, heroes and sub-men, Aryans and 
Tschandalen, described in the Ostara of Lanz von Liebenfels. 

But what is the evidence for Hider’s acquaintance with the Ostara 
and its determinative influence besides these earlier predisposing 
factors? In the first place, the chronology is unobjectionable. By the 
middle of 1908 Lanz had already published 25 Ostara numbers and 
would have published a further 40 numbers before Hitler finally left 
Vienna in May 1913. In view of the similarity of their ideas relating to 
the glorification and preservation of the endangered Aryan race, the 
suppression and ultimate extermination of the non-Aryans, and the 
establishment of a fabulous Aryan-German millennial empire, the 
link between the two men looks highly probable. Hitler stated 
subsequendy in Mein Kampf that his experiences at Vienna had laid the 
granite foundation of his oudook and that he had studied racist 
pamphlets at this time. 6 The likelihood of a local ideological influence 
again seems substantial. Earlier Hider biographers tended to confine 
their surveys of Hider’s supposed sources of inspiration to intellectually 
respectable writers on racial superiority and anti-Semitism such as 
Gobineau, Nietzsche, Wagner, and Chamberlain. But there is no 
evidence that Hider read their scholarly works. It is altogether more 
likely that he would have picked up ideas to rationalize his own dualist 
oudook and fixation on Germany from cheap and accessible pamphlets 
in contemporary Vienna. 

Austrian scholars were the first to suggest that Hitler gleaned the 
materials for his racist political ideas from the trivial literature of Lanz 
von Liebenfels. As early as the 1930s August M. Knoll used to ridicule 
the Nazis before his student audiences at the University of Vienna by 
observing that the German leader had simply taken his ideas from the 
locally notorious and scurrilous Ostara. This originally polemical 
speculation was first pursued by Wilfried Daim after the war. Daim 



194 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 

was a psychologist with a particular interest in sectarian beliefs and 
political ideologies. When Knoll mentioned the congruence of Lanz’s 
bizarre ideas with Nazi aims, Daim was very interested as a result of his 
plan to write a book about Nazism as a perverse religious system. The 
existence of a sectarian father behind Nazi ideology would lend great 
weight to his thesis. It was soon discovered that Lanz was still alive and 
the two scholars arranged to interview him at his home in Vienna- 
Grinzing. On 1 1 May 1 95 1 Lanz told Daim that Hitler had visited him 
at the Ostara office in Rodaun during 1909. Lanz recalled that Hider 
mentioned his living in the Felberstrasse, where he had been able to 
obtain the Ostara at a nearby tobacco-kiosk. He said that he was 
interested in the racial theories of Lanz and wished to buy some back 
numbers in order to complete his collection. Lanz noticed that Hitler 
looked very poor and gave him the requested back numbers free, as 
well as two crowns for his return fare to the city centre. 

Lanz’s statement was confirmed by several pieces of independent 
evidence. According to police records, Hitler was indeed resident 
from 18 November 1908 to 20 August 1909 at Felberstrasse 22/ 16 , a 
dreary street on the north side of the Westbahnhof, where he had 
moved after abruptly quitting the room he shared with August 
Kubizek. Daim also discovered from the Austrian Tobacco Authority 
that a kiosk had been leased at this time on the ground floor of 
Felberstrasse 18. Lanz is not likely to have known these details unless 
told them by Hitler himself. The mention of Hitler’s poverty also rings 
true, for Hitler’s funds began to run very low in the course of 1 909; the 
autumn and winter witnessed the most wretched period of his life 
when he was forced into short-stay warming-houses and doss-houses 
for heat and shelter at night. Finally, it must be remembered that Lanz 
would have been unlikely to fabricate an association with Hitler and 
Nazi ideology in 1951: Vienna was under Allied occupation and 
political investigations were still in progress. It therefore seems most 
probable that Hitler did visit Lanz and that he was a regular Ostara 
reader. 7 

In order to corroborate Lanz’ s testimony further, Daim subsequendy 
interviewed Josef Greiner, whom he regarded as the principal 
surviving witness of Hitler’s life in Vienna after 1 908. In his post-war 
Hitler biography Das Ende der Hitler- My thos (1947), Greiner claimed to 
have been friendly with Hitler at the men’s hostel on the Meldemann- 
strasse in Vienna-Brigittenau, where Hitler lived from February 1910 
until his departure for Munich in May 1913. On 31 December 1955 
Greiner supplied Daim with further details about Hider’s life in the 



195 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

hostel. He recalled that Hider possessed a substantial Ostara collection — 
there must have been at least fifty numbers in a stack about 25 
centimetres in thickness. When showed copies of the first Ostara series 
by Daim, Greiner said he remembered the distinctive comet design on 
the covers of the earliest numbers. He also claimed to remember 
Hider engaging in heated discussions with a fellow-boarder called 
Grill about the racial ideas of Lanz von Liebenfels. In a later 
conversation with Daim, Greiner stated that Hider and Grill had once 
travelled out to Heiligenkreuz Abbey to ask for Lanz’s current 
address. 8 

Despite Daim’s conviction that Greiner’s memory seemed reliable 
and his statements authentic, his testimony must be regarded with the 
utmost caution. In the first place, Greiner’s Hider biography has been 
found so inaccurate and even simply inventive on points of detail that 
several scholars have doubted whether Greiner ever knew Hitler at 
all. 9 The most important doubts concerning his authenticity as a 
source concern his dating. Greiner stated to Jetzinger that he 
befriended Hitler at the hostel in 1907 and that their acquaintance 
ended when he went to study engineering at Berlin in late 1 909. Since 
Hitler did not move into the hostel until early 1910, Greiner cannot 
have met Hider, unless he had mistaken the dates. On the other hand, 
the memoirs of Reinhold Hanisch, another hostel inmate and the 
salesman of Hider’ s paintings, do refer to a man called Greiner at the 
hostel. 10 This mention would suggest that Greiner did know Hider at 
the hostel, but that he forgot the exact date. But Greiner’s facility for 
invention was still apparent in his testimony to Daim: Hitler cannot 
have possibly wanted to learn Lanz’s address from the Heiligenkreuz 
monks if he already possessed Ostara numbers which gave an office 
address, nor if he had recendy visited Lanz in 1909. This visit to the 
abbey cannot have occurred earlier, because neither man had met 
Grill, Hider’s companion on the alleged Heiligenkreuz excursion, 
until they moved into the hostel in 1910. The only valuable evidence 
in Greiner’s testimony relating to the possible influence of Lanz on 
Hitler is that Hider possessed an Ostara collection and that he often 
discussed Lanz’s theories with Grill during his time at the men’s 
hostel. 

On the basis of these testimonies by Lanz and Greiner, the internal 
evidence of an ideological congruence between Lanz and Hitler may 
be reviewed. The most important similarity is their manichaean- 
dualist oudook: the world is divided into the light blue-blond Aryan 
heroes and the dark non-Aryan demons, working respectively for 



1% 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 



good and evil, order and chaos, salvation and destruction, in the 
universe. The Aryan is regarded by both men as the source and 
instrument of all that is fine, noble, and constructive, while the non- 
Aryan is allegedly bent upon confusion, subversion, and corruption. 
Lanz’s detailed provisions for Aryan supremacy were also echoed in 
the Third Reich: decrees banning inter- racial marriages, the extinction 
of inferior races and the proliferation of pure-blooded Germans by 
means of polygamy, and the care of unmarried mothers in the SS 
Lebensbom maternity homes were all anticipated in the Ostara. Lanz’s 
attitudes to sex and marriage were also shared by Hitler. Both men 
emphasized the propagadve value of marital relations and regarded 
women ambivalently. Lanz described women as ‘grown-up children’ 
yet condemned their capricious tendency to foil the breeding of a 
master-race by their sexual preference for racial inferiors. Hitler also 
treated women as pets, and his own sexual relations were characterized 
by a mixture of reverence, fear, and disgust. 

But Hider would not have accepted other parts of Lanz’s ideology. 
Lanz wanted a pan- Aryan state under Habsburg rule in Vienna, while 
Hider despised the Austrian dynasty, averting his gaze from its racial 
Babylon to the German motherland across the border. Lanz’s 
doctrine was also deeply imbued with Catholic and Cistercian liturgy: 
prayer, communion, the advent of a racially pure Christ-Frauja 
messiah, the establishment of priories for the Order of the New 
Templars, and the elaboration of ceremony would have possessed 
little appeal for Hitler, who rejected the ritual of Catholicism as an 
adolescent and later saw himself as the new German messiah. On the 
other hand, Hitler’s enthusiasm for Wagner’s chivalrous portrayal of 
the grail, its guardian knights and their idealism would have made him 
receptive to Lanz’s notion of a crusading order dedicated to the purity 
of Aryan blood. In a conversation of 1934 Hitler paid tribute to this 
notion: ‘How can we arrest racial decay? Shall we form a select 
company of the really initiated? An Order, the brotherhood of 
Templars round the holy grail of pure blood?’ 11 This utterance could 
be traced to a pre-war encounter with Lanz and his Order of the New 
Templars as well as to the operas of Richard Wagner. 

During the Third Reich Lanz is supposed to have been forbidden to 
publish, and his organizations, the ONT and the Lumenclub, were 
officially dissolved by order of the Gestapo. 12 These measures were 
most probably the result of the general Nazi policy of suppressing 
lodge organizations and esoteric groups, but it is also possible that 
Hitler wished to avoid any connection being made between his own 



197 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

political ideas and the sectarian doctrine of Lanz. A single Lanz 
monograph, Das Buck der Psalmen teutsch (1926), stands among the 
surviving 2,000 volumes of Hider’s personal library, 13 but this is 
neither conclusive evidence that the book was read nor does it 
essentially relate to Lanz’s ideology, being a later liturgical work. It 
also remains a fact that Hider never mentioned the name of Lanz in 
any recorded conversation, speech, or document. If Hider had been 
importantly influenced by his contact with the Ostara, he cannot be 
said to have ever acknowledged this debt. However, given his rapid 
political advance in Germany during the 1920s, and his titanic stature 
in the 1930s, it is not likely that he would point to the scurrilous 
pamphlets of an abstruse mystic in Vienna as his original inspiration. 

On the basis of the available evidence, then, it seems most probable 
that Hitler did read and collect the Ostara in Vienna. Its contents 
served to rationalize and consolidate his emerging convictions about 
the dualist nature of humanity and world-development and buttressed 
his own sense of mission to save the world. If his acquaintance with the 
series was limited to the numbers that appeared between late 1 908 and 
the middle of 1909, he must have been interested in Lanz’s empirical 
studies of racial characteristics, the differences between the blonds 
and the darks and the discussion of women, feminism, and sexuality 
in these particular issues. If he continued to collect numbers at the 
men’s hostel between 1910 and May 1913, he would have become 
familiar with the full scope of Lanz’s manichaean fantasy of the 
struggle between the blonds and the darks for racial and political 
supremacy. Only his continued subscription at Munich would have 
introduced him to Lanz’s concept of the grail as the central mystery of 
the Aryan race-cult and to materials about the ‘ario-christian’ Templars. 
But even if Hider read no further Ostara numbers after leaving Vienna, 
he would still have absorbed the essential aspects of Lanz’s Ariosophy: 
the longing for an Aryan theocracy in the form of a divinely-ordained 
dictatorship of blue-blond Germans over all racial inferiors: the belief 
in an evil conspiracy of such inferiors against the heroic Germans 
throughout history; and the apocalyptic expectation of a pan- German 
millennium that would realize Aryan world-supremacy. Such black- 
and-white dualism was the granite foundation of Hitler’s political 
outlook for life. 

The evidence for Hider’s knowledge of Guido von List and his 
Armanism is less firm and rests upon the testimony of a third party 
and some literary inferences. When Daim delivered a lecture at 
Munich in 1959 about Lanz von Liebenfels, he mentioned his 



198 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 



associate List in the subculture of Aryan occultism at Vienna. Daim 
was subsequently approached by a certain Elsa Schmidt-Falk, who 
claimed that Hider had regularly visited her and her late husband in 
Munich. At these meetings Hider frequendy mentioned his reading 
List and quoted the old master’s books with enthusiasm. Hitler also 
told her that some members of the List Society at Vienna had given 
him a letter of introduction to the President of the Society at Munich, 
but this came to nothing as Wannieck was ‘either mortally ill or had 
already died’ by the time Hitler finally arrived in Munich. 14 A further 
Munich source could corroborate Hitler’s interest in List. In 1921 Dr 
Babette Steininger, an early Nazi Party member, presented Hitler with 
Tagore’s essay on nationalism as a birthday present. On the flyleaf she 
wrote a personal dedication: ‘To Adolf Hitler my dear Armanen- 
brother’. 15 Her use of the esoteric term suggests a shared interest in the 
work of List. A final indication that Hitler might have been familiar 
with List’s themes is provided by Kubizek’s description of Hitler’s 
draft for a play he wrote at their shared lodging in 1908. The drama 
was based on the conflict between Christian missionaries and the 
Germanic priests of a pagan shrine in the Bavarian mountains. 16 Hitler 
might have easily taken this idea from List’s Die Armanenschaft derArio- 
Germanen, published earlier in the same year. 

Elsa Schmidt-Falk was in charge of a genealogical research group 
within the Nazi Party at Munich during the 1920s. She claims that she 
often met Hitler, whom she also knew from his Vienna period. 
According to her, Hitler was particularly inspired by List’s Deutsch- 
Mythologische Landschaftsbilder , of which he possessed the first edition. 
He also had a high opinion of Der Unbesiegbare (1898) and discussed 
most of the Ario-Germanic researches with her. Her other claims 
included the following statements: Hitler was inspired by List to 
undertake subterranean explorations at St Stephen’s Cathedral in 
Vienna; Hider was so intrigued by List’s burial of the wine bottles at 
Carnuntum in 1875 that he wanted to exhume this ‘first swastika’ once 
he had annexed Austria; Hitler’s delight over List’s regional folklore 
led him to suggest that she write a ‘Bayrisch-Mythologische Land- 
schaftsbilder’ about the environs of Munich; other Nazi leaders, 
including Ludendorff, Hess, and Eckart, were supposed to have read 
List. 17 

The full range of Schmidt-Falk’s claims make her testimony rather 
dubious. There is no evidence for Hitler ever having a particular 
interest in either archaeology or folklore. If Hider had read only the 
first edition of Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder, he would not have 



199 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

been familiar with the Carnuntum swastika story, which appeared in 
the second edition of 1913. The source of her knowledge concerning 
the reading of Eckart, Hess, and Ludendorff is unspecified, nor is it 
clear when she first heard Hitler speak about the annexation of 
Austria. Both statements would indicate her involvement with the 
Nazi movement from at least 1923 through to the Third Reich. 
Hitler’s interest in genealogy, besides his own, with especial reference 
to the ancestry of other Nazi leaders, which she allegedly undertook to 
research for him, is also unproven. But even if Schmidt-Falk’s 
testimony were dismissed altogether, there remains Steininger’s 
dedication of 1921, which implies a knowledge of List on the part of 
Hitler. 

The political aspects of List’s thought would have appealed to the 
young Hitler. List fulminated against the political emergence and 
nationalism of the Czechs, a sentiment in accord with Hitler’s feelings 
at Linz. List also condemned the fantastic monolithic conspiracy of 
the Great International Party against the Germans and its manifestations 
as democracy, parliamentarianism, feminism, and ‘Jewish’ influences 
in the arts, press, and business. List’s sharp division of the world into 
Aryans and non- Aryans also paralleled the dualistic doctrine of Lanz 
von Liebenfels. In his blueprint for the restoration of an Armanist 
state, List prescribed a rigid hierarchy of offices, levels of authority and 
traditional administrative districts ( Gaue ), which were subsequently 
emulated by volkisch leagues, the early Nazi Party, and theThird Reich. 
While the Aryans enjoyed many privileges and all political rights, the 
non- Aryans were to be trampled on as servants and slaves. List also 
preached the advent of a pan- German millennium, a new Ario- 
Germanic state with world-hegemony. Hitler could have identified 
with all this and also with List’s romantic evocation of the ancient 
Armanist world with its heroic leaders and their institutions. 

It is less likely that Hitler would have appreciated the antiquarian 
tendency of List’s work. Hitler was certainly interested in Germanic 
legends and mythology, 18 but he never wished to pursue their survival 
in folklore, customs, or place-names. He was interested in neither 
heraldry nor genealogy. Hitler’s interest in mythology was related 
primarily to the ideals and deeds of heroes and their musical 
interpretation in the operas of Richard Wagner. Before 1913 Hitler’s 
utopia was mother Germany across the border rather than a prehistoric 
golden age indicated by the occult interpretation of myths and 
traditions in Austria. Hitler’s love of Germany would also have 
precluded any sympathy with List’s celebration of the Habsburg 



200 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 

dynasty as an Armanist survival and Vianiomina-Vienna as the holy 
Aryan city of old. Once Hider had moved to Germany, he is unlikely to 
have either maintained or subsequently developed an interest in an 
Austrian volkisch antiquary. As in the case ofLanz, Hitler would have 
been attracted to the basic manichaean dualism of List’s racism, but 
his occult traditions would have held less appeal. 

Hitler left Vienna at the end of May 1913 and travelled westwards to 
the land of his dreams. On arrival in Munich his heart leapt at the 
sights and sounds of a truly German city. He took lodgings with a 
tailor’s family at Schleissheimerstrasse 34 and registered with the 
police as a ‘painter and artist’. He spent the following months 
exploring the Bavarian capital and its environs and eking out a modest 
living as a reladvely successful painter of postcard views. Many of his 
Munich paintings survive but there is little further evidence of his 
activities at Munich before his call-up in August 1 9 1 4. 19 No documents 
have been found to link him with the Germanenorden, the Reichs- 
hammerbund, or other volkisch groups in the city prior to the First 
World War. Hitler did once refer to his reading Philipp Stauff after 
volunteering for the German army in 1914. 20 Stauff impressed him 
concerning the dominance of Jewry in the German press, but there 
was no indication that Hitler knew anything about his sectarian and 
esoteric interests. 

Hitler’s disinterest in volkisch ideas relating to ancient Germanic 
institutions and traditions is reflected in the development of the early 
Nazi Party under his leadership. While the Thule Society and the 
Germanenorden were devoted to the Aryan-racist-occult cultural 
complex, their successor organizations stressed the lost war, the 
betrayal of Germany by politicians, and bitter anti-Semitism in their 
discussions and propaganda. Rudolf von Sebottendorff, the founder- 
leader of the Thule Society and an admirer of List, Lanz, and Stauff, 
encouraged the establishment of the Political Workers’ Circle (PAZ) 
with respect to mundane grievances in order to catch ‘the man in the 
street’. The German Workers’ Party (DAP) also had little concern for 
uo/Awc/i- cultural materials. There is no evidence that Hider ever 
attended the Thule Society. Sebottendorff quitted the Thule after the 
hostage fiasco in June 1919, while Hider first encountered the DAP in 
September 1919. Johannes Hering’s diary of Society meetings 
mentioned the, presence of other Nazi leaders between 1920 and 
1923, but not Hider himself. 21 Once Hitler was in firm control of the 
DAP, the party’s chief attribute was anti-Semitic oratory at public 
meetings and street activism, while any wottticA-cultural interests were 



201 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

relegated to the preserve of back room enthusiasts. 

In Mein Kampf Hider denounced the v olkisch wandering scholars’ 
and cultists as ineffectual fighters in the battle for Germany’s salvation 
and poured scorn on their antiquarianism and ceremonial. 22 This 
statement has been variously interpreted as an attack on Karl Harrer of 
the PAZ and his attempt to control the early DAP, or on the Strasser 
group in North Germany during the 1920s. In any case, the outburst 
clearly implies Hitler’s contempt for conspiratorial circles and occult- 
racist studies and his preference for direct activism. Hitler was surely 
influenced by the millenarian and manichaean motifs of Ariosophy, 
but its descriptions of a prehistoric golden age, a gnostic priesthood, 
and a secret heritage in cultural relics and orders had no part in his 
political or cultural imagination. These ideas were of course wide- 
spread in the volkisch movement, but Hider’s achievement was the 
transformation of this nationalist feeling and nostalgia into a violently 
anti-Semitic movement concerned with national revolution and 
revival. By contrast, Heinrich Himmler always dwelt on the old 
Germanic roots of his utopian plans. 

Ariosophy is a symptom rather than an influence in the way that it 
anticipated Nazism. Its origins lay in the conflict of German and Slav 
interests in the borderlands of nineteenth-century Austria. Guido von 
List’s eulogy of the ancient Teutons fostered German folk identity in 
the ethnically mixed provinces and towns of the late Habsburg 
empire. He then assimilated theosophy and occultism for his fabulous 
prehistory, describing the ancient priest-kings, their suppression by 
anti- German interests, and an apocalyptic prophecy of a glorious new 
Pan-German empire. Lanz von Liebenfels also formed his political 
outlook in the Pan-German movement of Schonerer but graduated to 
a more universal type of racism. Having engrossed himself in Monism 
and Social Darwinism, he developed his own mystical pan-Aryan 
doctrine. He combined anthropology and zoology with the Scriptures 
in his account of the heroic Aryan god-men, their near extinction due 
to the wiles of racial inferiors, and the possibility of their resurrection 
through a racist-chivalrous cult. List and Lanz both clearly expressed 
a widespread sense of German insecurity in late imperial Austria. 

Their doctrines advocated the rule of gnostic elites and orders; the 
stratification of society according to racial purity and occult initiation; 
the ruthless subjugation and ultimate destruction of non-German 
inferiors; and the foundation of a great pan-German empire with 
world-hegemony. Only extreme insecurity and anxiety among the 



202 




ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 

German nationalists of Austria can account for these narcissistic, 
paranoid, and grandiose fantasies. These ideas found enthusiastic 
acceptance among the anti-Semitic conventicles of Wilhelmian 
Germany and exercised a renewed appeal to volkisch groups after its 
military defeat. The noxious psychological atmosphere of the war and 
its confused aftermath fostered myths of plots and visions of a new 
Reich. Small groups and magazines devoted to Armanism, Ariosophy, 
and rune occultism conjured the image of a heroic and powerful 
Germany against the tribulations of the Weimar Republic. Ariosophy 
continued to find its votaries from its beginnings in Vienna around 
1890 until the Nazi revolution of 1933. The fantasies were then 
realized in the great homecoming of the Third Reich with its creation 
of a new pan-German order in Central and Eastern Europe. 

The appeal of Nazism was based on powerful fantasies designed to 
relieve acute feelings of anxiety, defeat, and demoralization. An anti- 
German conspiracy of Jews and their minions was supposed to be 
threatening the very survival of the German nation. The Socialists, the 
‘November criminals’ (the signatories of the shameful 1918 armistice), 
the Bolsheviks, the Freemasons, and even modern artists were all seen 
as agents of a monstrous Jewish plot to destroy Germany. 23 Only the 
total destruction of the Jews could thus save the Germans and enable 
them to enter the promised land. The chiliastic: promise of a Third 
Reich echoed medieval Joachite prophecy and remained a potent 
metaphor in the fantasy-world of so many Germans who bemoaned 
the lost war, the harsh terms of the peace settlement, and the misery 
and chaos of the early Weimar Republic. These myths of conspiracy 
and millennium were rekindled by the economic crash and depression 
in the period 1930-33. 

Semi-religious beliefs in a race of Aryan god-men, the needful 
extermination of inferiors, and a wonderful millennial future of 
German world-dominion obsessed Hitler, Himmler, and many other 
high-ranking Nazi leaders. 24 When the endless columns of steel- 
helmeted legionaries marched beneath the swastika at the massive 
martial displays of the 1930s, Germany was effectively saluting the 
founder-emperor of a new One Thousand Year Reich. But all this 
optimism, exuberance, and expectation was matched by a hellish 
vision. The shining new order was sustained by the wretched slave- 
cities where the Jewish demons were immolated as a burnt sacrifice or 
holocaust. The Nazi crusade was indeed essentially religious in its 
adoption of apocalyptic beliefs and fantasies including a Newjerusalem 
(cf. Hitler’s plans for a magnificent new capital at Berlin) and the 



203 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

destruction of the Satanic hosts in a lake of fire. Auschwitz, Sobibor, 
and Treblinka are the terrible museums of twentieth-century Nazi 
apocalyptic. 

The Nazi dreams did not come true. The Great Hall of Berlin with 
its enormous dome was not completed in 1 950; the Wewelsburg was 
not reconstructed as a gigantic SS Vatican by the 1960s; the giant 
motorways and broad gauge railways as far as the Caucasus and the 
Urals were never laid; Western Russia was not transformed into a huge 
colonial territory for German soldier-peasants; nor did the SS 
Lebensbom stud-farms produce 1 50 million pure-blooded Germans for 
the New Order. 25 The glorious One Thousand Year Reich actually 
ended a mere twelve years after its proclamation with the military 
defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945. But even if these grandiose plans and 
megalomaniac visions had not gone beyond the stage of maps, 
memoranda and miniature models, the Third Reich had accomplished 
sufficient demolition of the old order in Europe for it to remain an 
outrage which still haunts literature, films, and the memory of 
survivors. Both Ariosophy and the Nazi fantasies offer important 
materials for a study of apocalyptic hysteria in the leadership of a 
modern state. With the growth of religious nationalism in the late 
twentieth century, an understanding of the preconditions for such 
apocalyptic remains a crucial factor in the maintenance of global 
security. 



204 




Appendix A 



Genealogy of Adolf Josef Lanz 
alias Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels 



Matthias Lanz 
*c. 1720 



Gertrud Westermaver 



Franz Lanz == Katharina? 

*22.4. 1753 

Stephan Lanz = ? 

=6.6.1777 J 

Joseph Lanz = Isaminger Hornl 
*7.1.1802 j 



Franz HofTenreich ~ Antonia 
del Trabo 



Johann Lanz 
* 15.5. 1 840 
t22. 1.1911 



= Katharina Hoffenreich 
I *21.1 1.1853 
T27. 10.1928 



Joseph Lanz 
*27.7.1841 
t7.2. 1899 



= Rosa Kraus 
*4.9.1853 
127.5.1927 



Maria Theresia Lanz 
*5.10.1880 



Adolf Josef Herwik Friedrich Karl Helena Rosalis 

*19.7.1874 (Friedolin) Antonia 

1-28.4.1954 *3.1 1.1877 *1.4.1879 

t24.8.1956 



Josephine Lanz 

1-26.6.1969 
(niece of LvL) 



Source: Parish Registers at the Catholic Church of St Jakob, 
Cumberland Strasse, Vienna- Penzing XIV. 



Franz Lanz 
*19.6.1845 



Gustav 
*8.8.1880 
f6.4. 1882 



205 



appendix b 



Genealogy of the Sebottendorff Family 

(a) Von der Rose Line 



Carljohann Moritz = Maria von Bodeck 
*1698 t!760 *1716+1791 




Karl Philipp Franz Ludwig Moritz Ildesons Ignaz Anton = Maria von Johann Baptist Franzjoseph 

*17401-1818 *1741 1 1 822 *1747 11800 “174911821 I Riva-Finoli *1751 11830 *1754 11800 




Karl — Catharina von Alovs Moritz — Maria von Hanussfalu Heinrich 

*1796 Czethowska *1798 *180511888 1*1819 11904 *180911847 




*1834 *1837 *1840 *1843 11915 Zehmen *1852 11929 

*1843 11922 

Sources : Gothaische Genealogische Taschenbiicher der freiherrtichen Hauser 7 (1857), 700-3; ibid., 38 (1888), 776f. 




Karl Heinrich Gottlob = Juliane von Ziemietzsky 
*1752 tl815 I *1760 1 1 837 




Source: Genealogisches Taschenbuch der adligen Hauser 12 (Brno, 1887), 440-2. 



Appendix C 



The History of Ariosophy 



Between January 1929 and June 1930 a long essay by Lanz appeared in 
serial form in the Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform. ‘Die Geschichte 
der Ariosophie’ claimed to trace the history of the ariosophical racial religion 
and its opponents from earliest times up until the present. This account 
provides a graphical account of Lanz’s neo-manichaean conception of the 
world, inasmuch as he attempted to identify all historical agents as being 
within one or other of two eschatological camps, working respectively for 
good or evil, light and darkness, order and chaos. 

According to Lanz, the earliest recorded ancestors of the present ‘ario- 
heroic’ race were the Atlanteans, who had lived on a continent situated in the 
northern part of the Adantic Ocean. 1 They were supposedly descended from 
the original divine Theozoa with electromagnetic sensory organs and super- 
human powers. Catastrophic floods eventually submerged their continent in 
about 8000 BC and the Adanteans migrated eastwards in two groups. The 
Northern Adanteans streamed towards the British Isles, Scandinavia, and 
Northern Europe, while the Southern Atlanteans migrated across Western 
Africa to Egypt and Babylonia, where they founded the antique civilizations 
of the Near East. The ariosophical cult was thus introduced to Asia, where the 
idolatrous beast-cults of miscegenation had flourished. 2 

Lanz claimed that the racial religion had been actively preached and 
practised in the ancient world. He asserted that Moses, Orpheus, Pythagoras, 
Plato, and Alexander the Great had been its champions. The laws of Moses 
and Plato’s esteem for the aristocratic principle, and his provision fora caste 
of priest-kings in The Republic , proved them Ariosophists. Lanz conflated the 
writings of these ancient thinkers into a monolithic ariosophical tradition, 
which focused on the famous library at Alexandria, which allegedly housed a 
magnificent collection of ariosophical scriptures. Scholars and priests from 
all over the world were said to have come here to study the old papyri of 
the Southern Adanteans; here the Old Testament (afundamental ariosophical 
text) was edited from scattered chronicles discovered in Palestine; a college of 
priest-kings attached to the library spread the racist gnosis through mission- 
aries as far as China. The entire Hellenistic world was thus supposed to be 

209 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

familiar with Ariosophy before the advent of Christ-Frauja. The coming of 
Frauja and his establishment of the Church unleashed — so it was maintained — 
a new wave of ariosophical missionary activity in the world. 3 

The Germans entered the ariosophical tradition as a result of the 
missionary activities of Wulfila (c. 311-83). Wulfila translated the Bible into 
the Gothic language and carried the gospel to the Germanic tribes which had 
settled on the Balkan peninsula and beyond the River Danube. He had also 
been a partisan of the Arian heresy (so named after the theologian Arius of 
Alexandria). Lanz claimed that Wulfilia had actually preached the Aryan 
racial religion to the Germanic tribes. The suppression of the Arian heresy 
was interpreted as a victory for those devoted to the beast-cults. Lanz angrily 
charged these pagans with the defacement of the famous codex of the Gothic 
Bible. Because most of its racist passages had been excised, the Germans were 
permitted to neglect those strict eugenic observances, which would have 
guaranteed their transformation into god-men. 4 Lanz wrote five Luzemer 
Briefe numbers about the supposedly suppressed writings of Wulfila, together 
with a lexicon which provided a key to the hidden meaning of his surviving 
text. 5 

Despite the suppression of the Arian heresy and the failure of the Goths to 
realize the racial parousia within their extensive sixth-century empire, 
Ariosophy was fostered by new historical agents. Lanz identified the revival 
of Ariosophy in the monastic tradition of medieval Europe. Lanz regarded 
the Benedictine Order as a revival of the old Aryan colleges of priest-kings, 
dedicated to the preaching of the racist gnosis and organized on hierarchical 
principles. He wrote five studies about the ariosophical inspiration of the 
Benedictines. 6 After identifying the reformed monastic orders as agents of 
Ariosophy Lanz traced this spiritual heritage to the Cistercian Order. Lanz 
celebrated this order and its famous leader St Bernard of Clairvaux (1090- 
1 153) as the principal force behind Ariosophy in the Middle Ages. 7 

Because of their close links with the Cistercian Order, the military order of 
the Knights Templars was regarded by Lanz as the armed guard of 
Ariosophy. Its rule had been composed by St Bernard, who wrote a homily of 
praise, De Laude novae militiae (c. 1 132), and preached the Second Crusade in 
1146. According to Lanz, the Templars were attempting to stem the tide of 
inferior races in the Near East, and so provide a bulwark of racial purity on 
the eastern flank of Aryan Christendom. Their efforts were paralleled in the 
west by the military orders of Calatrava, Alcantara, and Aviz, which had been 
formed during the mid-twelfth century to fight the Moors in Spain. 

Lanz invoked the struggle of the medieval military orders against the 
heathen powers as a legitimation of his own crusade against populism, 
democracy, and Bolshevism in the twentieth century. With graphical 
imagination Lanz conjured up an ideological map of the world from the 
eighth to the seventeenth century: within the ever tightening ring formed by 
the Islamic powers of Northern Africa, the Middle East and eventually the 



210 




THE HISTORY OF ARIOSOPHY 



Balkans, and the amorphous Mongol hordes of the steppes, lay the embatded 
‘ario-christian’ domain. The constant offensive of peoples devoted to the 
beast-cults and the threatened destruction of European racial supremacy 
necessitated the crusades of the military orders. Thus medieval Christendom 
was envisaged as a martial monastery of aristocratic and racial virtue, from 
which armed knight-monks rode forth to break the vice-like encirclement of 
the aggressive inferiors. These images nourished Lanz’s vision of a modern 
crusade against the political emancipation of the masses through parliamen- 
tary democracy and socialist revolution. 

The Middle Ages represented the golden age of Ariosophy to Lanz. A 
world of bold knights, pious monks, magnificent castles, beautiful monasteries 
was underlaid by the racist-chivalrous cult of the religious and military 
orders. The religion of this period was ‘keine weichliche Humanitats- Religion, 
sondem eine extrem-aristokratische und ariokratische Rassenkultreligion und eine 
straffe , supranationale, alle arioheroischen V6lkerumfassendewissenschaftliche,politische 
und wirtschaftliche Organisation, welche rueksichtslos, bisweilen sogar mit Harte, das 
Untermenschentum ausrottete, oder im Sklaven- und Horigentum oderinjudenghetti in 
Untermenschentum ausrottete, oder im Sklaven- und Horigentum oderinjudenghetti in 
uiohltatigen Schranken hieltt’ [‘no insipid humanity-religion, but an extremely 
aristocratic and “ariocratic” racial cult religion and an austere scientific, 
political and economic organization embracing all ario-heroic peoples. This 
religion ruthlessly exterminated sub-humanity or else kept it charitably 
within the bounds of slavery and serfdom or in Jewish ghettoes!”] Lanz 
regarded the ‘cosmic week’ (a subdivision of the Platonic year) from 480 to 
orders. The culture of the period was described as 'die letzte herrliche, beriickend 
schone Bliite arisch-heldischer Religion, Kunst und Wissenschaft ’ [‘the last magnificent 
and fascinatingly beautiful blossoming of ario-heroic religion, art and 
science’]. 8 

The suppression of theTemplars in 1308 signalled the end of this era and 
the ascendancy of the racial inferiors. Henceforth Europe witnessed the slow 
decline of her racial, cultural, and political achievements. The growth of 
towns, the expansion of capitalism, and its creation of an industrial labouring 
class led to the breakdown of the aristocratic principle and the strict 
maintenance of racial purity. Christianity was perverted into a sentimental 
altruistic doctrine, which taught that all men were equal, and that man 
should love his neighbour, irrespective of his race. During the ‘cosmic week’ 
from 1210 to 1920 Europe was subject to a process of debasement, 
culminating in the enormities of Bolshevism and its open proclamation of 
rule by the masses. 

Lanz was obliged to trace a typically Listian secret heritage for his account 
of the post-medieval Ariosophy tradition. He claimed that Ariosophy survived 
due to an underground culture of ‘several spiritual orders and genial 
mystics’. The first link in this cryptic heritage was the Order of Christ, which 
had been founded in 1319 by the King of Portugal. This order was a successor 



211 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

organization to the Templars in Portugal and played an important role in the 
Portuguese voyages of discovery. Henry the Navigator (1394-1460), who 
sponsored the voyages which led to the discovery of the Azores, Madeira and 
northwestern Africa, was a grand master of the order. His ships sailed under 
the flag of the order, which bore the red heraldic cross of the Templars. The 
later colonization of Angola, the circumnavigation of the Cape of Good 
Hope, and the discovery of the passage to India were also associated with the 
patronage of the order, which had been partially secularized in 1496. The 
former military orders of the Reconquista, the Order of Aviz in Portugal, and 
the Orders of Calatrava and Alcantara in Spain, were also secularized in the 
early sixteenth century. They became royal orders of chivalry, conferred in 
respect of services to the Portuguese and Spanish crowns. 

The survival of these medieval military orders and their involvement with 
the expansion of European interests appealed to Lanz in his quest for 
ariosophical agents. He claimed that their Cistercian origins and colonial 
achievements identified them as the secret instruments of a post-medieval, 
world-wide ariosophical crusade. Lanz ascribed all Portuguese and Spanish 
colonialism to the ships sailing under the red Templar cross: ‘Die Flotten der 
Ritterorden entdeckten und eroberten eine game neue Welt . . . ein Universalreich unter 
Fuhrung der Christus- und Calatrava- Ritter . . . stolz wehte die Christritter-Flagge auf 
alle Meeren, die Flagge mitdem roten Tempel-Ritterkreuz . . . Die Hauser der spanisch- 
portuguesischen Cisterzienser- Ritter zdhlten in den verschiedensten Landem in die 
Tausende’ [The fleets of the chivalrous orders discovered and conquered a 
whole new world ... a universal empire under the leadership of the Knights of 
Christ and the Knights of Calatrava . . . The flag of the Knights of Christ flew 
proudly over all the seas, the flag with the red chivalric cross of the Templars. 
There were thousands of houses belonging to the Spanish and Portuguese 
Cistercian knights in the most diverse countries’], Lanz also identified the 
two Habsburg houses of Spain and Austria as the cryptic agents of a new 
ariosophical empire, which embraced both the Spanish possessions in 
Central and South America and the core area of Central Europe under 
Emperors Frederick IV, Maximilian I, ‘die letzten Ariosophen auf Kaiserthronen’ 
[‘the last Ariosophists upon imperial thrones’], and Charles V in the early 
sixteenth century. After the Spanish had secured the New World it remained 
to expand Habsburg-ariosophical influence in the East. Lanz claimed that 
this was the real aim of Charles’s plans for a new crusade against the Turks with 
the aid of the Spanish-Portuguese orders and the Maltese Knights of Stjohn. 
He believed that this project fell victim to the demonic machinations of the 
Jews and the Lutherans, who wished to stifle the ariosophical renaissance. 9 

The mortality of all human institutions and empires frustrated Lanz’s 
attempt to posit an enduring and visible ariosophical tradition in history. His 
spurious accounts of the monastic and military orders, the Portuguese 
voyages of discovery, and Spanish and Austrian imperialism, which sought to 
conflate distinct historical enterprises into a movement of unique inspiration 



212 




THE HISTORY OF ARIOSOPHY 

and ambition, could not bear the scrutiny of informed criticism. Lanz turned 
to more marginal social elements in his quest for an irrefutable agent of the 
ariosophical gnosis down through the ages. He posited an underground 
ariosophical tradition of mystics, romantics, and occultists. 

In the Middle Ages this ‘ario-christian’ mystical tradition included the 
following: Hildegard of Bingen (d. 1179), Gertrude the Great (d. 1303), 
Mechtilde of Magdeburg (d. 1282?), Meister Eckhart (d. 1327), Jan von 
Ruysbroeck (d. 1381) and Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471). In the early modern 
period, these mystics were succeeded by famous pietists, including: Jakob 
Boehme (d. 1624), Angelus Silesius (d. 1671), Nikolaus von Zinzendorf (d. 
1760) and Emanuel Swedenborg (d. 1772). After the Enlightenment Lanz’s 
roll of ariosophical initiates included romantic thinkers and occultists of the 
nineteenth century including: J. B. Kerning (1774-1851), the mystical 
Freemason; Carl von Reichenbach (1788-1869), the Viennese investigator of 
animal magnetism; the French occultists, Eliphas Levi (1810-75), Josephin 
Peladan (1858-1918), Gerard Encausse (1865-1916), and Edouard Schure 
(1841-1929); and the theosophists, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (1831-91), 
Franz Hartmann (1838-1912), Annie Besant (1847-1933), and Charles 
Webster Leadbeater ( 1 847-1934). The tradition finally led to Guido von List, 
Rudolf John Gorsleben, and the mythologists of an Aryan Atlantis, Karl 
Georg Zschaetzsch, and Hermann Wieland. 10 

This evident decline in the historical significance and intellectual calibre of 
ariosophical initiates was a logical corollary of Lanz’s rejection of the modern 
age and its achievements. Because he could not identify with any cultural 
tradition of established status in the present, he could claim only a small 
group of sectarians as the sole representatives of the formerly universal 
religion. As List had discovered in his search for theological antecedents, it 
was relatively easier to recruit initiates in the distant past but the task was far 
more difficult in an age which was characterized as subject to darkness, evil 
and illusion. Like the Gnostics of antiquity, the Ariosophists could only claim 
to carry a spark of divinity in the midst of chaos. 



213 




Appendix d 



New Templar Verse 



Der Sang der Nibelungenstrom 

Die Quellen, die aus Rhatiens Gletscherhallen 
Seit ew’ger Zeit vom Inn zur Donau wallen, 

Im Reich des Ostara als macht’ger Strom 
Dann griissen Linz und seinen Dom. 

Doch, wo Granit durchbrach der Wogendrang, 
Wo einst der Nibelungen Horn erklang, 

Wo jetzt der Strudel engt die Wellenpfade, 
Ragt eine Burg auf schroffem Felsgestade. 

Da grtisst im hellen Fruhlingssonnenschein 
Das Kreuzesbanner hoch von Werfenstein. 

Die Donauwellen raunen alte Weisen 
Vom Freundesbund der Edlen und Templeisen. 
Der neue Bund, der Meister Werk zu kronen, 
Dient Gott in Tat und weihevollen Tonen. 
Vom Geistdes Widens froh, vernimmt die Schar, 
Was einst der Templeisen Sendung war. 

Aus reinem Quell stromt auch fur sie die Kraft, 
Die niemals alternd, neues Leben schafft, 

Und Burg und Bund, der Reinheit nur geweiht, 
Stehn fest im Strudel und im Drang der Zeit. 

Fr. Aemilius 



[i Ostara I, 88 Templeisen-Brevier, ein Andachtsbuchfiir 
wissende und innerlithe Ariochristen, 2. Teil { 1 9 1 6), p. 4.] 



215 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Burg und Hain von Werfenstein 

Bruder, was dein Auge schaut, 
Hier im heil’gen Haine, 

Leg es in dein Herze traut 
Als vom ‘Werfensteine’. 

Nicht des Daseins Alltagsbrauch 
Wird den Menschen hoher heben. 
Nur wenn hehrer Geister Hauch 
Ihn durchwehet, wird sein Leben 
Wiirdevoll und edler Art, 

Und sein inn’res Auge sehen, 

Was von Gott gesetzt ihm ward 
Als der Seele Auferstehen 
Aus der Siinde dust’rem Tal 
Zu der Gralsburg lichten Hohen. 
Doch der Pfad zu ihr ist schmal, 
Wen’ge werden ihn nur gehen. 
Siehe dort im Tempelhain 
Weissgekleidete Gestalten. 

Bruder sind’s von Werfenstein, 
Frauja’s Wille lenkt ihr Waken. 
Einsam in der Menschenwelt, 

Sind vom Herrn sie auserkoren, 
Das zu tun, was Gott gefallt, 
Reinheit haben sie geschworen. 
Reinheit in des Leibes Blut, 
Reinheit in des Geistes Streben. 
Reinheit heisst ihr Edelgut, 
Reinheit wird zu Gott sie heben. 
Geh, und wahre dieses Wort: 
Reinheit in des Herzens Schreine. 
Mach Dein Herz zum Felsenhort, 
Machs zur Burg vom Werfensteine! 

Fr. Dedef 



[i Ostara I, 88 Templeisen-Brevier, ein Andachtsbuch fiir uiissende und innerliche 
Ariochristen, 2. Teil (1916), p. 5.] 



216 




Appendix e 



The Modern Mythology 
of Nazi Occultism 



In this book we have recounted the ideas and the history of Ariosophy, 
including its links with the Nazi movement in Germany. However, there is a 
persistent idea, widely canvassed in a sensational genre of literature, that the 
Nazis were principally inspired and directed by occult agencies from 1 920 to 
1 945. This mythology does not owe its origin to Ariosophy, but to a post-war 
fascination with Nazism. This fascination is perhaps evoked by the irrationality 
and macabre policies of Nazism and the short-lived continental dominion of 
the Third Reich. A small fanatical party is recalled to have seized power in a 
European country and then succeeded in extending its state power across a 
huge area from the Atlantic coast to. the Caucasus mountains, and in the 
course of all this made the extermination of the Jews one of its primary 
objectives. The immense significance of these events has set National 
Socialism quite apart from other topics in modern history. The enduring 
fascination with N azism is well illustrated by the annual volume of new books 
devoted to Hider and other Nazi leaders, the Second World War, the SS, the 
concentration camps and the holocaust. The total defeat of the Third Reich 
and the suicides and executions of its major figures have further mystified the 
image of Nazism. To a young observer, National Socialism frequently 
appears as an uncanny interlude in modern history. 

This mysterious image of the movement accounts for that plethora of 
popular novels describing the adventures of fugitive war criminals, secret 
post-war Nazi organizations, and the discovery of Hitler many years after his 
supposed death. The appeal of this sensational literature lies in the uncanny 
intrusion of an extinct order, generally considered both monstrous and 
forbidden, upon the familiar world of liberal institutions. 1 Nor is this 
fascination with the macabre aspects of Nazism confined to literature. 
Insignia and mementoes from the Third Reich are often collected by 
psychopaths and sadists, while extreme right-wing groups and bizarre sects 
have adopted Nazi dress and ceremonial. 2 This literature of clandestine 
revivals, illicit initiations, and the persistence of evil ideas and agencies 



217 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

defines a realm of speculative history which has built on slender evidence and 
tenuous associations to suggest that National Socialism was linked with 
occultism. 

Since 1960 a number of popular books have represented the Nazi 
phenomenon as the product of arcane and demonic influence. The 
remarkable story of the rise of Nazism is implicitly linked to the power of the 
supernatural. According to this mythology Nazism cannot have been the 
mere product of socio-economic factors. No empirical or purely sociological 
thesis could account for its nefarious projects and continued success. The 
occult historiography chooses to explain the Nazi phenomenon in terms of 
an ultimate and arcane power, which supported and controlled Hitler and 
his entourage. This hidden power is characterized either as a discarnate 
entity (e.g. ‘black forces’, ‘invisible hierarchies’, ‘unknown superiors’), or as a 
magical elite in a remote age or distant location, with which the Nazis were in 
contact. Recurring themes in the tradition have been a Nazi link with hidden 
masters in the East, and the Thule Society and other occult lodges as channels 
of black initiation. All writers of this genre thus document a ‘crypto-history’, 
inasmuch as their final point of explanatory reference is an agent which has 
remained concealed to previous historians of National Socialism. 

The myth of a Nazi link with the Orient has a complex pedigree of 
theosophical provenance. The notion of hidden sacred centres in the East 
had been initially popularized by Blavatsky in The Secret Doctrine , based on the 
‘Stanzas of Dzyan’, which she claimed to have read in a secret Himalayan 
lamasery. Blavatsky maintained that there existed many similar centres of 
esoteric learning and initiation; magnificent libraries and fabulous monasteries 
were supposed to lie in mountain caves and underground labyrinths in the 
remote regions of Central Asia. Notable examples of these centres were the 
subterranean city of Agadi, thought to lie in Babylonia, and the fair oasis of 
Shamballah in the Gobi Desert, where the divine instructors of the Aryan race 
were said to have preserved their sacred lore. 3 This mythology was extended 
by a French author, Joseph Saint-Yves d’Alveydre ( 1842-1909), who described 
the secret city of Agartha as a theocracy that guided the course of world 
history. According to telepathic messages which he claimed to have received 
from the Dalai Lama of Tibet, this city lay beneath the Himalayas. 4 
Ferdynand Ossendowski, who travelled through Siberia and Mongolia after 
the Russian Revolution, gave some credence to these fantasies with his 
account of local Buddhist beliefs, which referred to the subterranean 
kingdom of Agartha where the King of the World reigned. This utopian 
kingdom was credited with supernatural powers that could be unleashed to 
destroy mankind and transform the surface of the entire planet. 5 

These ideas of a secret theocracy in the East were supplemented by the 
power of vril. In his novel The Coming Race (1871) Sir Edward Bulwer-Lvtton 
had attributed this power to a subterranean race of men, the Vril-ya, 



218 




THE MODERN MYTHOLOGY OF NAZI OCCULTISM 

psychically far in advance of the human species. The powers of vril included 
telepathy and telekinesis. This fictional notion was subsequendy exploited by 
Louis Jacolliot, French consul in Calcutta under the Second Empire, in his 
studies of oriental beliefs and sects, which Blavatsky had herself quarried 
while working on the text of Isis Unveiled ( 1 8 7 7). 6 The vril was understood to be 
an enormous reservoir of energy in the human organism, inaccessible to 
non-initiates. It was believed that whoever became master of the vril force 
could, like Bulwer-Lytton’s race of Vril-ya, enjoy total mastery over all nature. 
Willy Ley, who emigrated to the United States in 1935 after a short career as a 
rocket engineer in Germany, wrote a short account of the pseudo-scientific 
ideas which had found some official acceptance during the Third Reich. 
Besides the World Ice Theory and the Hollow Earth Doctrine, which both 
found Nazi patrons, Ley recalled a Berlin sect which had engaged in 
meditative practices designed to penetrate the secret of vril ? 

Louis Pauwels and Jacques Bergier cited this article in their Le matin des 
magiciens (1960), the second part of which was devoted to the Third Reich 
under the suggestive title ‘A few years in the absolute elsewhere’. They 
exaggerated the significance of this obscure Berlin sect, in order to claim that 
the Nazi leadership was determined to establish contact with an omnipotent 
subterranean theocracy and gain knowledge of its power. It was thought that 
this power would enable Germany to conquer the whole world and 
transform human life in accordance with a millenarian vision: 

Alliances could be formed with the Master of the World or the King of Fear who 
reigns over a city hidden somewhere in the East. Those who conclude a pact will 
change the surface of the Earth and endow the human adventure with a new 
meaning for many thousands of years . . . The world will change: the Lords will 
emerge from the centre of the Earth. Unless we have made an alliance with 
them and become Lords ourselves, we shall find ourselves among the slaves, on 
the dungheap that will nourish the roots of the New Cities that will arise . 8 

Pauwels and Bergier claimed that Hitler and his entourage believed in such 
ideas. In their account the Berlin sect was known as the Vril Society or the 
Luminous Lodge (perhaps a garbled reference to the Lumenclub of Vienna) 
and credited with the status of an important Nazi organization. A French 
psychiatrist was quoted to the effect that ‘Hitler’s real aim was to perform an 
act of creation, a divine operation ... a biological mutation which would 
result in an unprecedented exaltation of the human race and the “apparition 
of a new race of heroes and demi-gods and god-men’”. 9 In this way, racism 
was linked with the occult mythology of an Eastern theocracy and the vril 
force to evoke a millenarian image of the intended Nazi future. 

This legendary account of Nazi inspiration and ambition was underpinned 
by a fanciful account of the Thule Society and certain of its members. Pauwels 
and Bergier singled out two particular individuals as Hider’s occult mentors 



219 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

at Munich during the early 1920s. Dietrich Eckart (1868-1 923) was a volkisch 
playwright and journalist of violently anti-Semitic prejudice, and a prominent 
figure among the nationalist circles of Munich. He is also known to have 
attended meetings of the Thule Society. It is accepted by scholars that Eckart 
not only gave force and focus to Hider’s burgeoning anti-Semitism after the 
war, but that he also introduced the young party leader to moneyed and 
influential social circles. 10 The second individual was Karl Haushofer ( 1 869- 
1946), who had served as a military attache in Japan and became a lifelong 
admirer of oriental culture. After the First World War Haushofer embarked 
upon an academic career in the field of political geography, subsequently 
gaining the Chair of Geopolitics at the University of Munich, where Rudolf 
Hess was his student assistant Hider was supposedly impressed by Haushofer’ s 
theories, taken from Sir Halford Mackinder, that the ‘heardand’ of Eastern 
Europe and Russia ensured its rulers a wider dominance in the world. 11 

According to Pauwels and Bergier, the influence of these two men upon 
Hider chiefly related to the communication of arcane knowledge which was 
derived from unknown powers, with which contact had been established 
through the Thule Society and other cults. Eckart’s role as an occult 
counsellor was related explicidy to invisible hierarchies. 

Thule was thought to have been the magic centre of a vanished civilization. 
Eckardt [sic] and his friends believed that not all the secrets of Thule had 
perished. Beings intermediate between Man and other intelligent beings from 
Beyond, would place at die disposal of the Initiates [i.e. the members of the 
Thule Society] a reservoir of forces which could be drawn on to enable 
Germany to dominate the world . . . [its] leaders would be men who knew 
everything, deriving their strength from the very fountain-head of energy and 
guided by the Great Ones of the Ancient World. Such were the myths on which 
the Aryan doctrine of Eckardt and Rosenberg was founded and which these 
prophets . . . had instilled into the mediumistic mind of Hider. [The Thule 
Society] was soon to become ... an instrument changing the very nature of 
reality . . . under the influence of Karl Haushofer the group took on its true 
character as a society of Initiates in communion with the Invisible, and became 
the magic centre of the Nazi movement. 12 

This spurious account also maintained that Haushofer was a member of the 
Luminous Lodge, a secret Buddhist society in Japan, and the Thule Society. 
As an initiate of the Eastern mysteries, rather than as a geopolitician, 
Haushofer is supposed to have proclaimed the necessity of ‘a return to the 
sources’ of the human race in Central Asia. He advocated the Nazi 
colonization of this area, in order that Germany could have access to the 
hidden centres of power in the East. 13 The consequence of this link with 
‘unknown superiors’ was that the Thule Society was thus revealed to be the 
secret directing agent of the Third Reich. This assertion and the other details 



220 




THE MODERN MYTHOLOGY OF NAZI OCCULTISM 

are entirely fallacious. The Thule Society was dissolved around 1925 when 
support had dwindled. While Eckart and Rosenberg were never more than 
guests of the Thule during its heyday, there is no evidence at all to link 
Haushofer with the group. 

This fictitious image of the Thule Society was developed further by 
Dietrich Bronder in his book Bevor Hitler kam (1964). Bronder claimed that 
Haushofer met George Ivanovitch Gurdjieff, the Caucasian thaumaturge, at 
least three times between 1 903 and 1 908 in Tibet. Gurdjieff was supposed to 
have initiated Haushofer into the Tibetan mysteries. 14 The Thule Society was 
alleged to have renewed German contact with the secret monastic orders of 
Tibet through a small colony of Tibetan Buddhists, which was established at 
Berlin in 1928; an SS expedition was said to have gone to Tibet with the 
express purpose of setting up an apparendy vital radio link between the Third 
Reich and the lamas in 1 939. The ‘Stanzas of Dzyan’ were allegedly used as a 
code for all messages between Berlin and Lhasa during the war. Bronder 
completed his account with a spurious membership roll of the Thule Society 
which included: Sebottendorfif, Guido von List, Lanz von Liebenfels, 
Mussolini, Hider, Hess, Goering, Himmler, Frank, and Haushofer. 15 This 
mythical account posited the existence of a sinister link of diabolical 
influence between Nazi Germany and a theosophically imagined Tibet. It 
may also be noted that Bronder’s work was the first crypto-history to 
introduce the Ariosophists. Similar bizarre accounts of Nazi satanism, using 
the stock properties of the Vril Society, the much abused Haushofer, and the 
Thule Society were reiterated in Werner Gerson, Le nazisme,' societe secrete 
(1969), Elisabeth Antebi, Ave Lucifer (1970), Jean-Claude Frere, Nazisme et 
societes secretes (1974), and J. H. Brennan, Occult Reich (1974). 

While these mystifications may be traced to theosophical notions, there 
are other mythological sources for this crypto-history. Trevor Ravenscroft 
attached to Nazism a mythology that stems from anthroposophy. Several 
years after the Second World War, Ravenscroft met Walter Johannes Stein 
(1891-1957), an Austrian Jew who had emigrated from Germany to Britain in 
1933. Before the establishment of the Third Reich, Stein had taught at the 
Waldorf School in Stuttgart, which was run according to the anthroposophical 
principles of Rudolf Steiner. During his time there, Stein wrote a curious and 
learned book, Weltgeschichte im Lichte des Heiligen Oral (1928), which was based 
upon an anthroposophical interpretation of medieval literature and history. 
Stein argued that the grail romance of Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parzival 
(c.1200) had been written against the historical background of the ninth 
century, and that the fabulous characters of the epic corresponded to real 
persons who had lived during the Carolingian Empire. For example, the grail 
king Anfortas was named as King Charles the Bald, the grandson of 
Charlemagne; Cundrie, the sorceress and messenger of the grail, was 
considered to have been Ricilda the Bad; Parzival himself was named as 



221 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Luitward of Vercelli, the chancellor to the Frankish court; and Klingsor, the 
evil magician and owner of the Castle of Wonders, was identified as Landulf 
II of Capua, a man of sinister reputation due to his pact with the heathen 
powers of Islam in Arab-occupied Sicily. The battle between the Christian 
knights and their evil adversaries was understood as an allegory of the 
enduring struggle for possession of the Holy Lance, supposed to have 
pierced the side of Christ at his Crucifixion. 16 

Ravenscroft based his occult account of Nazism on Stein’s work. In The 
Spear of Destiny ( 1 972) he related how the young student Stein had discovered a 
second-hand copy of Parzival in an occult bookshop in the old quarter of 
Vienna in August 1912. This volume contained numerous jottings in the 
form of a commentary on the text, which interpreted the epic as trials of 
initiation upon a prescribed path to the attainment of transcendent conscious- 
ness. This interpretation was supported by many quotations drawn from 
oriental religions, alchemy, astrology, and mysticism. Stein also noted that a 
strong theme of racial hatred and pan-German fanaticism ran through the 
entire commentary. The name written on the inside cover of the book 
indicated that its previous owner was Adolf Hitler. His curiosity aroused 
concerning the jottings, Stein returned to the bookshop to ask the proprietor 
if he could tell him anything about Hitler. Ernst Pretzsche informed Stein 
that Hider was an assiduous student of the occult and gave him his address. 
Stein sought Hider out. In the course of their frequent meetings, in late 1912 
and early 1913, Stein learned that Hitler believed that the Holy Lance could 
grant its owner unlimited power to perform either good or evil. The 
succession of previous owners allegedly included Constantine the Great, 
Charles Martel, Henry the Fowler, Otto the Great, and the Hohenstauffen 
emperors. As the property of the Habsburg dynasty, the Lance now lay in the 
Hofburg at Vienna. Hider was determined to gain possession of the Lance in 
order to secure his own bid for world domination. Ravenscroft also included 
the sensational story that Hitler had accelerated his occult development 
through the use of hallucinogenic peyote, to which he had been introduced 
by Pretzsche, who had worked until 1892 as an apothecary’s assistant in the 
German colony at Mexico City. 17 

Ravenscroft described an equally fanciful social network of people 
supposedly involved with occult lore in Munich. Dietrich Eckart was 
described as an occult student who had travelled in Sicily to find the castle of 
Landulf II at Caltabellotta, where this putative model for Klingsor had 
performed satanic rituals of Arabian astrological magic that were said to have 
appalled the Christians of Southern Europe. Landulf was supposed to have 
invoked the spirits of darkness through the torture and sacrifice of human 
victims; Ravenscroft suggested that the Thule Society under the direction of 
Eckart, performed similar rituals on Jews and communists who had 
unaccountably disappeared in Munich during the early years of the 



222 




THE MODERN MYTHOLOGY OF NAZI OCCULTISM 

Republic. Ravenscroft even recruited for his Nazi mythology the person of 
Aleister Crowley (1875-1947), the English magician, who established his 
antinomian Abbey ofThelemaat Celafu in 1921. Crowley was also alleged to 
have hunted for clues at Caltabellotta, while Eckart made a study of Crowley’s 
gnostic sex-magic and its symbolical connections with Landulf’s Satanic 
practices. This jumble of links between twentieth-century occultism and 
ninth-century Sicily was crowned by the claim that Hitler believed himself to 
be the reincarnation of Klingsor-Landulf. 18 Ravenscroft concluded that 
Eckart and Haushofer initiated Hitler into black rituals designed to establish 
contact with evil powers: 

Dietrich Eckart contrived to develop and open the centres in the astral body of 
Adolf Hider, giving him the possibility of vision into the macrocosm and means 
of communication with the powers of darkness . . . utilising his memories of a 
past incarnation as the Landulf of Capua in the ninth century ... By divulging 
The Secret Doctrine , Haushofer expanded Hider’s time-consciousness . . . [and] 
awakened [him] to the real motives of the Luciferic Principality which possessed 
him so that he could become the conscious vehicle of its evil intent in the 
twentieth century . 19 

The centres of the astral body, vision into the macrocosm, the Luciferic 
Principality and its imminent manifestation as the Anti-Christ are all 
concepts derived from anthroposophy. Here it can be clearly seen how 
Ravenscroft adapted the materials of Rudolf Steiner and Walter Johannes 
Stein to the mythology of occult Nazism. Spiritualism also featured in his 
fantastic account of the Thule Society. Obscene seances with a naked 
medium were said to have been held by Eckart, Rosenberg, and Sebottendorff 
as a means of contacting the shades of the murdered Thule hostages. Both 
Prince von Thurn und Taxis and Heila von Westarp proclaimed from 
beyond the grave that Hitler would be the next claimant of the Holy Lance 
and lead Germany into a disastrous bid for global conquest. 20 

It was not long before the crypto-historians had discovered the Ariosophists. 
Their secret hierarchies and occult gnosis fulfilled all the requisite criteria for 
an arcane view of National Socialism. After Bronder’s inclusion of List in the 
Thule Society, Ravenscroft was the next author to exploit List as Hider’s 
occult mentor. In the dingy office of Pretzsche’s bookshop, Stein is said to 
have seen a group photograph which showed Pretzsche beside Guido von 
List. Stein recalled List as the infamous founder of an occult lodge, which had 
been exposed by the Vienna press as a ‘blood brotherhood’ for performing 
rituals involving sexual perversion and the practice of medieval black magic. 
On being exposed in 1 909, List was compelled to flee from Vienna for fear of 
being lynched by outraged Catholics. 21 Ravenscroft inferred that both Ernst 
Pretzsche and Adolf Hitler were associated with List’s lodge: ‘According to 
Hider, Pretzsche was himself present when Guido von List attempted to 
materialise “the Incubus” in a ritual designed to create a “Moon Child”.’ 22 



223 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

There is not a shred of evidence for such rituals. List was never obliged to 
leave Vienna and he enjoyed the patronage of prominent Vienna figures. The 
nature of the rituals Ravenscroft described indicate the inspiration of Aleister 
Crowley, especially with regard to the creation of a ‘Moon Child’. It may be 
added that no one called Pretzsche was resident in Vienna between 1 890 and 
1920, nor did this name ever appear in the membership list of the List 
Society. The fictional nature of the whole episode surrounding the annotated 
copy of Paruval is suggested by the similarity of Pretzsche’s obscure 
bookshop to the one described by Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton in Zanoni 
(1842), which probably served Ravenscroft as a literary model. 23 

Lanz von Liebenfels made his debut in this mythological history in 
Michel-Jean Angebert, Les mystiques du soleil (1971). In this account the young 
Hider is supposed to have come under the influence of the Heiligenkreuz 
novice in 1898. The origins of this fantasy concern the choir school at 
Lambach monastery, which Hider (aet. 8) attended for singing lessons from 
July 1897 to January 1899. In 1898 Lanz is alleged to have arrived at 
Lambach monastery, where he spent several weeks poring over the private 
library of Theoderich Hagn, its former abbot. The reason for his interest in 
these books lay in the nature of the abbot’s studies. According to Angebert, 
the abbot had been a profound scholar of astrology and the occult sciences. 
Between 1856 and 1868 he was supposed to have travelled in the Middle East 
and the Caucasus in search of arcane lore. Angebert also attributed Hagn’s 
choice of the swastika as his coat-of-arms to an oriental source of inspiration. 
This armorial swastika is in fact displayed in a relief above a gateway in the 
monastery. Frere repeated this story, stating that Lanz stayed long months in 
the library, ‘rarely emerging save for a frugal meal, when he talked to no one 
and gave the impression of extreme agitation, as if labouring under the 
impact of an amazing discovery’. 24 The alleged contact between Lanz and 
Hider was left unstated. 

This episode is wholly imaginary. There is no evidence whatsoever for 
Hagn’s extended travels; his blazon was traditionally borne by his family and 
derived from the name ‘Hagn’: Haken means hook and this swastika emblem 
is simply a hooked cross. 25 Nevertheless the myth of the Lambach swastika 
was already current during the Third Reich. A popular artist painted a 
tasteless pastiche of the famous picture of Saint Francis receiving the stigmata 
in which young Adolf was portrayed kneeling before the abbey gateway with 
rays of light falling from the heraldic swastika onto his out-stretched hands. 26 
The painting was widely circulated in the form of little printed icons. These 
ideas of an early encounter between Lanz and Hider, and Hider’s supposed 
veneration of the swastika in childhood, are evidence of the eagerness with 
which these crypto-historians seek to establish links with the occult in the 
early life of the future Fiihrer. 

Books written about Nazi occultism between 1 960 and 1975 were typically 



224 




THE MODERN MYTHOLOGY OF NAZI OCCULTISM 



sensational and under-researched. A complete ignorance of the primary 
sources was common to most authors and inaccuracies and wild claims were 
repeated by each newcomer to the genre until an abundant literature existed, 
based on wholly spurious ‘facts’ concerning the powerful Thule Society, the 
Nazi links with the East, and Hitler’s occult initiation. But the modern 
mythology of Nazi occultism, however scurrilous and absurd, exercised a 
fascination beyond mere entertainment. Serious authors were tempted into 
an exciting field of intellectual history: Ellic Howe, Urania's Children (1967, 
reissued as Astrology and the Third Reich, 1984) dealt with the story of Hitler’s 
alleged private astrologer, andjames Webb devoted a chapter to ‘The Magi of 
the North’ in The Occult Establishment (1976). By focusing on the functional 
significance of occultism in political irrationalism, Webb rescued the study of 
Nazi occultism for the history of ideas. 



225 




Notes and References 



INTRODUCTION 

1 The term ‘Ariosophy’, meaning occult wisdom concerning the Aryans, was first 
coined by Lanz von Liebenfels in 1 9 1 5 and became the label for his doctrine in the 
1920s. List actually called his doctrine ‘Armanism’, while Lanz used the terms 
‘Theozoology’ and ‘Ario-Christianity’ before the First World War. In this book 
‘Ariosophy’ is used generically to describe the Aryan-racist-occult theories of both 
men and their followers. 

2 George L. Mosse, The Crisis of German Ideology (New York, 1964), pp. 1-10. 

3 The mobilization of German national feeling by means of monuments, choral, 
gymnastic, sharpshooters’, and other public festivals is discussed in George L. 
Mosse, The Nationalization of the Masses (New York, 1975). 

4 Fritz Stern, The Politics of Cultural Despair (Berkeley, Calif., 1961). 

5 Peter G.J. Pulzer, The Rise of Political Anti-Semitism in Germany and Austria (New York, 
1964). 

1. THE PAN-GERMAN VISION 

1 Robert A. Kann, Das Nationalitatenproblem der Habsburgermonarchie, second edition, 
2 vols. (Graz and Cologne, 1964), II, 387-94. Population and nationality in the 
Austrian provinces, according to Kann, were distributed as follows: 

Lower Austria, including Vienna (pop. 3,500,000): Germans, 95 per cent; 
Czechs, 4 per cent. Upper Austria (pop. 850,000): Germans, 99.7 per cent. 
Salzburg (pop. 215,000): Germans, 99.7 per cent. Tyrol (pop. 950,000): 
Germans, 57 per cent; Italians, 42 percent. Styria(pop. 1,440,000): Germans, 
71 percent; Slovenes, 29 per cent. Carinthia (pop. 400,000): Germans, 79 per 
cent; Slovenes, 21 per cent. Carniola (pop. 525,000): Germans, 5 per cent; 
Slovenes, 95 percent. Bohemia and Moravia (pop. 9,400,000): Germans, 34 per 
cent; Czechs, 66 per cent. Silesia (pop. 760,000): Germans, 43.9 per cent; 
Poles, 32 per cent; Czechs, 24 per cent. Galicia (pop. 8,000,000): Germans, 1 
per cent; Poles, 59 per cent; Ruthenes, 40 per cent. Bukovina (pop. 800,000): 
Germans, 21 percent; Ruthenes, 38 percent; Romanians, 34 percent; Poles, 5 
percent; Magyars, 1 percent. Dalmatia (pop. 650,000): Germans, 0.5 percent; 
Serbo-Croats, 97 per cent; Italians, 3 per cent. Kiistenland (Istria, Triest, 
Gorizia) (pop. 915,000): Germans, 4 per cent; Italians, 44 per cent; Serbo- 
Croats, 20 per cent; Slovenes, 32 per cent. 



227 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

2 Eduard Pichl, Georg Schonerer und die Entwicklung des Alldeutschtums in der Ostmark, 
third edition, 6 vols. (Oldenburg and Berlin, 1938), VI, 168-72. 

3 Andrew Gladding Whiteside, The Socialism of Fools (Berkeley, 1975), p. 269. 

4 Whiteside, op. cit., pp. 43-63. 

5 A full account of the disorders following the Badeni language decrees may be 
found in Whiteside, op. cit., pp. 160-87. 

6 Whiteside, op. cit., p. 209. The background to such an anti-clerical reaction is 
described in William A. Jenks, Austria under the Iron Ring 1879—1893 (Charlottesville, 
1965). 

7 The Los von Rom campaign is treated in detail in Whiteside, op. cit., pp. 243-62. 

8 See below, pp. 68 ff. 

9 GLB 2a (1911), pp. 25-7; and see below, p. 83. 

10 Ostara III, 1 (1930), p. [v], 

1 1 A. de Gobineau, Essai sur I’Inegalite des Races (Paris, 1853-5). 

12 A detailed history of Social Darwinist publications and societies in Germany may 
be found in Hans-Giinther Zmarzlik, ‘Der Sozialdarwinismus in Deutschland als 
geschichtliches Problem’, Vierteljahreshefte fur Zeitgeschichte 11 (1963), 245-73. 

IS The influence of Ernst Haeckel (1834-1919) and the Monist League in the 
dissemination of popular Social Darwinism is the subject of Daniel Gasman, The 
Scientific Origins of National Socialism (London, 1971). 

14 William A. Jenks, Vienna and the young Hitler (New York, 1960), pp. 37-9. 

15 ibid., p. 1 18. 

16 Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf (Munich, 1934), pp. 59ff. 

1 7 Eugen Diederichs, the influential German publisher ofjena, had cultivated volkisch 
ideas since 1896 within a new religious mystique which drew on irrationalism, 
pantheism, gnosticism and theosophy. Gary D. Stark, Entrepreneurs of Ideology 
(Chapel Hill, 1981), pp. 69-76. Prominent Ariosophists in Germany before the 
First World War included Gravell (Heidelberg), Sebaldt and Stauff (Berlin). Over a 
third of the List Society members were resident in Germany at the time of its 
inauguration in 1908. 

18 See below, Chapters 2 and 4. 

19 Adolf Hitler, op. cit., p. 135. 

2. THE MODERN GERMAN OCCULT REVIVAL 1880-1910 

1 Richard Cavendish, A History of Magic (London, 1977), pp. 9f, 162f. 

2 For the life of H. P. Blavatsky, see Vsevolod Soloviev, A Modem Priestess of Isis 
(London, 1895); Gertrude Marvin Williams, Priestess of the Occult (Madame Blavatsky) 
(New York, 1946); Howard Murphet, When Daylight Comes (Wheaton, 111., 1975). 

3 William Emmette Coleman, ‘The source of Madame Blavatsky’s writings’, in 
Vsevolod Soloviev, A Modem Priestess of Isis (London, 1 895), pp. 353-66. 



228 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

4 S. B. Liljegren, ‘Quelques romans anglais. Source partielle d’une religion 
moderne’, in Melanges d’histoire litteraire generate, edited by Fernand Baldensperger, 
2 vols. (Paris, 1 930), II, 60-77, and Bulwer-Lytton's Novels and Isis Unveiled (Uppsala, 
1957). 

5 Coleman, op. cit., p. 358. 

6 Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, second edition, 2 vols. (London, 
1888), II, 6-12, 300 f, 433-6. The myth of Lemurian miscegenation is discussed in 
ibid., II, 184, 266f, and may have inspired Lanz von Liebenfel’s quasi-Gnostic 
concept of the Fall. See below p. 101 f. 

7 Alvin Boyd Kuhn, Theosophy. A Modem Revival of Ancient Wisdom (New York, 1930), 
pp. 206 f, 232-52. 

8 Blavatsky, op. cit., II, p. 318f. 

9 Kuhn, op. cit., p. 1 99 f. 

10 George L. Mosse, ‘The mystical origins of National Socialism’, Journal of the 
History of Ideas 22 ( 1 96 1 ), 8 1-96 (p. 8 1 ). 

1 1 Janos Frecot, Johann Friedrich Geist and Diethart Kerbs, FIDUS 1868-1948: Zur 
asthetischen Praxis burgerlicher Fluchtbewegungen (Munich, 1972), pp. 15-58 ocnApassim. 

12 Details of Wilhelm Hiibbe-Schleiden and this first theosophical venture in 
Germany may be found in Emil Bock, Rudolf Steiner. Studien zu seinem Lebensgang und 
Lebenwerk, second edition (Stuttgart, 1961), pp. 170-90. 

13 Biographical details of Franz Hartmann may be found in Hugo Goring, Dr Franz 
Hartmann, ein Vorkampfer der Theosophie (Brunswick, 1894) and Franz Hartmann, 
Denkwurdige Erinnerungen (Leipzig, 1898). 

14 Walter Schonenberger, ‘Monte Verita und die theosophischen Ideen’, in Monte 
Verith: Berg der Wahrheit, edited by Harald Szeemann (Milan, 1980), pp. 65-79. 

15 Schwabe, ‘Protokoll uber die 1. Nationalkonvention der “Theosophischen 
Gesellschaft” in Europa (Deutschland)’, Metaphysische Rundschau 1 (1896), 279-83. 
The origins of American theosophy are documented in Emmett A. Greenwalt, 
California Utopia: Point Lome 1897-1942 (San Diego, 1978). 

16 Franz Hartmann, ‘Ein Abenteuer unter den Rosenkreuzern’, Neue Metaphysische 
Rundschau 1 (1898), 156-67, 232-43, 333-41, 386-9, 429-34; ibid. 2(1899), 18—22, 
46-51, 93-105, 241-54, 273-81, 305-14, 337-46. The first edition had appeared 
in English as An Adventure among the Rosicrucians (Boston, Mass., 1887). 

1 7 Paul Zillmann, ‘Die Wald-Loge und Akademie ffir okkulte Wissenschaften’, Neue 
Metaphysische Rundschau 1 (1898), 226-8 and Die Wald-Loge (Gross-Lichterfelde, 
[1912]). 

18 Paul Zillmann, ‘Theosophische Bewegung', Neue Metaphysische Rundschau 4 (1901), 
187-8. 

19 Paul Zillmann, ‘Unmassgebliches zum theosophischen Kongress 1902’, Neue 
Metaphysische Rundschau 5 (1902), 168-72. 



229 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

20 For a recent biography of Rudolf Steiner and an analysis of his thought see 
Geoffrey Ahern, Sun at Midnight. The Rudolf Steiner Movement and the Western Esoteric 
Tradition (Wellingborough, 1984). 

2 1 Biographical details of Hugo Vollrath may be found in Ellic Howe, Astrology and the 
Third Reich [published originally as Urania’s Children ] (Wellingborough, 1984), p. 
791. 

22 Elisabeth Kumpf-Rohm (Bopfmgen) to author, letter dated 23 October 1979. 

23 For a history of the New Thought movement in Germany, see Charles S. Braden, 
Spirits in Rebellion (Dallas, 1963), pp. 468-80. 

24 See Bibliography for a list of these periodicals and book-series. 

25 Friedrich Eckstein, ‘Alte unnennbare Tage!' (Vienna, 1936); cf. the account in Emil 
Bock, op. cit., pp. 58-61, 72-84. 

26 The Association and its library are advertised in Die Gnosis 1 (September 1903). 

27 Notices in Zentralblatt fur Okkultismus 1 (1908), 385, 530. 

28 Ellic Howe, op. cit., p. 8 If. 

29 Josef Greiner, Das Ende des Hitler- Mythos (Zurich, 1947), pp. 88 f. 

30 Paul Zillmann used the adjective ‘metaphysical’ to describe the entire range of 
disciplines in the modern occult revival. Neue Metaphysische Rundschau 1 (1898), ii. 

31 Rudolf Steiner, An Autobiography, second edition (New York, 1980), pp. 141-4. 

32 Carl E. Schorske, Fin-de-STecle Vienna (Cambridge, 1981), pp. 5-10. 

3. GUIDO VON LIST 

1 Osterreichisches Staatsarchiv (Allgemeines Verwaltungsarchiv), Vienna, Zl. 
12.263/71. 

2 The portrait is reproduced in Johannes Balzli, Guido v. List. Der Wiederentdecker 
uralter arischer Weisheit (Leipzig and Vienna, 1917), facing p. 5. 

3 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder , second edition, 2 vols. (Leipzig 
and Vienna, [1913]), II, 641 and plates, passim. This work is hereafter cited as D-ML. 

4 Guido List, D-ML, II, 592. 

5 Balzli, op. cit., pp. 15—17. 

6 Balzli, op. cit., p. 18. Guido List, ‘Neujahr 1870 in den Alpen ',Jahrbuch des 
Osterreichischen Alpenvereins 7 (1871). 

7 Guido List, D-ML, II, 642. 

8 ibid., I, 117-37. 

9 ibid., II, 562-91. 

10 ibid., II, 438. 

11 ibid., I, 125. 

12 ibid., II, 642 f. 



230 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

IS List may have given Lanz the impression that his mother had squandered her late 
husband's estate, in order to extenuate his own failure at business. According to 
Lanz, List lost his money through his mother and ‘bad contracts, wills and 
women’. J. Lanz von Liebenfels, ‘Guido von List’, Zeitschriftfur Menschenkenntnis und 
Schicksalsforschung 2 (1927), 74-89 (p. 76). 

14 Guido List, D-ML, I, 328-45. 

15 This essay was subsequendy published in D-ML , II, 562-91. 

16 ibid., II, 587. 

1 7 The earliest reference to the Association dates from 1887, but it had no premises in 
Brno until 1891. For a history of the Association and a survey of its publications, 
see Blatter vom Deutschen House, 27 vols. (Brno, 1887-1913). 

18 Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 1 October 1893, pp. 1-3; ibid., 31 October 1 893, pp. 10-11. 

19 Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 1894 , passim. 

20 Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 13 and 14 Feburary 1895, pp. 1-3. 

21 Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 25 and 26 September 1895, pp. 1-2; ibid., 28 and 31 
December 1895, pp. 1-3. 

22 Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 12 February 1896, pp. 1-2. 

23 See Bibliography for a survey of List’s journalism. 

24 The 1892 lecture is described in Balzli, op. cit., p. 30. The 1893 lecture is 
announced in Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 24 February 1893, p. 3 and published as an 
article, ‘Von der deutschen Wuotanspriesterschaft’, Das Zwanzigste Jahrhundert 4 
(1893), 119-26, 242-51, 343-52, 442-51. 

25 A report of the festival is printed in Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 3 and 4 December 1894, 
pp. 2-3, 5. The play was published as a pamphlet, Wolfgang Heinrich Collection 
(Linz). A second edition is printed in Irminsul 2 (1970), Heft 5. 

26 The Guido List evening is announced in Ostdeutsche Rundschau, 9 April 1895, p. 3. 
Wiedener Sangerbund programmes, Wolfgang Heinrich Collection (Linz). 

27 This incident is related in Balzli, op. cit., p. 33. 

28 Osterreichisches Staatsarchiv (Allgemeines Verwaltungsarchiv), Vienna, Zl., 
12.263/71. 

29 Herwig (pseudonym of Eduard Pichl), Georg Schonerer und die EntwicUung des 
Alldeutschtumes in der Ostmark, 4 vols. (Vienna, 1912-23) II, 426-8; PeterG.J. Pulzer, 
The Rise of Political Anti-Semitism in Germany and Austria (New York, 1964), p. 207. 

30 The portrait is reproduced in Guido List, D-ML, 1, plate facing p. 208. 

31 Balzli, op. cit., p. 33. 

32 Guido List, Der Wiederaufbau von Camuntum (Vienna, 1900), pp. 16-31. 

33 Balzli, op. cit., p. 35 f; ‘Diealten Gotter— das alte Recht’, Irminsul 10 (1978), Heft 5. 

34 Guido List, ‘Die Ursprache der Arier, deren Schrift und Heilszeichen’, manuscript 
dated c. 1 903, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/ 1 244. An account of the manuscript’s 



231 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

submission to the Academy and its reception is printed in the published edition. 
Guido List, Die Ursprache der Ario-Germanen und ihre Mysteriensprache (Leipzig and 
Vienna, [1914], pp. 1-8. 

35 Balzli, op. cit. , p. Ilf. The old chronicle was Bucelinus, Germania Topo-Chrono- 
Stemmato-Graphica (Nuremberg, 1655-78). 

36 W. H. Bruford, The German Tradition of Self-Cultivation (Cambridge, 1975) pp. 226- 
63. 

37 The articles on heraldry appear in Leipziger lllustrierte Zeitung, 4 May 1905, p. 680f; 
15 March 1906, p. 4 1 7 f; and 31 January 1907, p. 188f. 

38 Lanz von Liebenfels first met both List and Franz Kiessling at Gars am Kamp in 
c. 1892. Sephine and Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels to Walther Gubitz, letters dated 12 
and 20 August 1952, Rudolf Mund Archive (Vienna). 

39 The text of the interpellation and its signatories is printed in GTE 6 [ 1 9 1 4], pp. 2 ff 

40 A list of signatories is printed in GLB 3 (1908), [p. 197 f], 

41 Membership lists are printed in GLB 2 (1908), pp. 7 1-4 and GLB 5(1910), pp. 384- 
9. The articles of the List Society are printed in GLB 1, second edition (1912), pp. 
68-78. Karl Herzog joined the Society c. 1 9 1 2. Karl Herzog to Philipp Stauff, letter 
dated 3 February 1912, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/512a. 

42 ‘Einige wenige Ausziige aus den Urteilen der Presse uber die Guido-List- 
Bucherei’, in GLB 2a (1911), pp. 269-85. 

43 The lectures are described in GLB 2a (1911), pp. 239-41, 

44 GLB 3 (1908), recto rear cover. 

45 GLB 3 (1908), p. 191. 

46 GLB 5 (1910), p. 13. 

47 GLB 2a (1911), p. 242. 

48 Balzli, op. cit., pp. 45f, 239-42. 

49 Ellerbek (pseudonym for Gustav Leisner) wrote that the works of List andTarnhari 
convinced him that ‘AR selig lachend lebt’, letter to List dated 25 October 1915, 
quoted in Balzli, op. cit., p. 155. Ellerbek’s Versailler Visionen (1919), an apocalyptic 
critique of the peace settlement, was subtitled an ‘occult-armanistic’ confession, 
while his volkisch novel, Sonne Sonnings Sohne auf Sonnen-See (1920), contained four 
letters from Guido von List in an appendix. For later armanist usage see Carl 
Reinhold Petter, Der Armanismus ah Zukunfts-Religion (Danzig- Langfuhr, 1919) and 
Kurt van Emsen, Adolf Hitler und die Kommenden (Berlin, 1932). Petter was the 
chairman of the Supranational Aryan League at Danzig. 

50 Rudolf J. Mund, Der Rasputin Himmlers (Vienna, 1982). 

51 The account of the pilgrimages and the photographs are in Guido List, D-ML, II, 
59 1-602. The pilgrims were List and spouse, Wilhelm Koehne and spouse, Rudolf 
Janko and spouse, Friedrich Oskar Wannieck, Heinrich Winter, Eugen Mertens 
and Philipp Stauff. Heinrich Winter died on 18 July 1911, Wilhelm Koehne on 
11 May 1912, and Friedrich Oskar Wannieck on 6 July 1912. 



232 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

52 Balzli, op. cit., p. 68 f. Participants at the HAO meeting in April 1915 included: 
General Blasius von Schemua; Josef Neumayer, the retired Lord Mayor ofVienna; 
Franz Lang, Imperial Privy Councillor; FriedrichJ. Bieber, the secretary of the List 
Society; Franz Zenkl; Emmerich Boyer, von Berghof, the author; Baron Skal; A. 
Blamauer; Rudolf Janko; Heinrich Franz Lang; Walter Fellner; and Guido List. 

53 Letters from soldiers and officers at the front to Guido List are printed in Balzli, op. 
cit., pp. 167-74. 

54 Philipp Stauff, ‘Guido von List gestorben ’ , Munchener Beobachter, 24 May 1919, p. 4. 

4. WOTANISM AND GERMANIC THEOSOPHY 

1 K. V. Miillenhoff, Deutsche Altertumskunde , 5 vols. (Berlin, 1870-1900), IV, 585-7. 

2 GLB 1 (1908), pp. 1-25. 

3 George L. Mosse, The Crisis of German Ideology (New York, 1964), pp. 1 3 f. 

4 'Wanidis' was conceived as a three-volume work: I. Band. WAN, Das Wunschwahnen 
der Midgartmenschen (in three parts); II. Band. I, ein Ich; III. Band. DIS, Die 
arische ‘Sexual-Religion’ (in three parts). The first two volumes were never 
published but their contents may be inferred from a synopsis in the third. 
Maximilian Ferdinand, "Wanidis’. Der Triumph des Wahnes. III. Bd. DIS, Die arische 
‘Sexual-Religion’ (Leipzig, 1897), pp. 5-8, 33-5. 

5 [Guido List], ‘Germanischer Lichtdienst’, Der Scherer 1, Heft 4 (17 June 1899), p. 5. 
For details of this paper’s political line see Andre Banuls, ‘Das volkische Blatt “Der 
Scherer”’, Vierteljahreshefte fur Zeitgeschichte 18 (1970), 196-203. 

6 Guido List, ‘Die esoterische Bedeutung religioser Symbole’, Die Gnosis 1 (1903), 
323-7 . The two men were also personally acquainted, a fact made plai n by a fly-leaf 
dedication to ‘Guido von Lis'vir; dem sinnenden Forscher, von Maximil. Sebald'^f, 
Sonnenwend 1906’ in Diaphetur (1905). Ekkehard Hieronimus Archive (Hanover). 
The use of a^for a ‘t’ occurs often in List manuscripts. 

7 GLB 3 (1908), pp. 15f, 19-23. 

8 GLB 1 (1908), pp. 37 f, 45, 66; GLB 2 (1908), p. 3; GLB 3 (1908), p. 190. 

9 GLB 3 ( 1 908), pp. 1 9 f, 22n. Blavatsky had discussed these topics in The Secret Doctrine 
third edition, 2 vols. (London, 1893), II, 72f. 

10 Guido List, Die Religion der Ario-Germanen (Zurich, 1910), pp. 91-3. 

11 ibid., pp. 29-36. 

12 GLB 5 (1910), p. 30. 

13 GLB 5(1910), pp. 22f, 55f, tables I, II and III. Table II is supplemented by references 
to texts about occult ‘correspondences’. Agrippa von Nettesheim, De occulta 
philosophia (1533) and an obscure contemporary work, S. Schweinburg-Eibenschitz, 
Studien eines Feidmarschalls uberdas Priester-Orakel der alten Hebrder (Baden, 1895). The 
field marshal was Christoph Gottfried von Engelhardt (d. 1767), who was familiar 
with the theosophical and cabbalistic thought of the secret societies in the 
eighteenth century. 

14 Franz Hartmann, ‘Rundschau in der auslandischen theosophischen Literatur’, 
Neue Lotusbluten 2 (1910), 370. 



233 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

15 GLB 6 [1914], pp. 19-24, table I. 

16 Friedrich Wannieck to Guido List, letter dated 12 December 1914, in Balzli, op. 
cit. , pp. 183-6. 

17 Willy Schrodter, Die Geheimkiinste der Rosenkreuzer (Warpke-Billerbeck, 1954), p. 121. 

18 Friedrich Schwickert, Das Lebenselixier in Bulwers Romanen (Leipzig, 1918). Schwickert 
published several standard texts of astrological theory in the 1920s, which 
employed the deterministic method of the French astrologer, Morin de Villefranche 
(1583-1656), counsellor to Louis XIII, Louis XIV and Cardinal Richelieu. 

1 9 Karl Heise wrote about sun-worship, reincarnation, the astral body and miracles. 
These themes were evidently consistent with the cultofMazdaznan. This cult had 
been founded c. 1900 in the United States by Otto Hanisch (1 856-1936), a German 
immigrant from Poznan. Hanisch used the name Otoman Zar-Adusht Ha’nish 
and claimed to have been born in Tehran, supposedly in order to lend credence to 
the alleged Zoroastrian origins of his cult. The cult spread to Europe in the first 
decade of the century. Details of the cult in Ellic Howe, Astrology and the Third Reich 
(Wellingborough, 1984), p. 85, andjames Webb, The Occult Establishment (La Salle, 
111., 1976), pp. 32, 74. 

20 List first mentioned the ‘Templeisen’ in GLB 2 (1908), p. 64 f. He drew heavily on 
Lanz’s racial dualism in GLB 2a (191 1), pp. 66-71. The continent ‘Arktogaa’ was 
first mentioned in GLB 4 ( 1 909), p. 2. A map, showing the location and coastline of 
‘Arktogaa’, was published by Lanz in Ostara 1, 50 (191 1), p. 8, and used by List in D- 
ML, I, 119. 

5. THE ARMANENSCHAFT 

1 Cornelius Tacitus, ‘Germania’, in Comelii Taciti Opera Minora, edited by M. 
Winterbottom and R. M. Ogilvie (Oxford, 1975), pp. 37-62 (p. 38). 

2 GLB 2 (1908), p. 4. 

3 GLB 1 (1908), p. 32. 

4 GLB 2 (1908), p. 17. 

5 GLB 2 (1908), p. 41; GLB 6 [1914], pp. 347-64. 

6 GLB 2 (1908), p. 18f. 

7 GLB 2 (1908), p. 4f. 

8 GLB 2 (1908), p. 20. 

9 The sacred legitimation (or sacralization) of social institutions confers upon them 
an ultimately valid ontological status. Peter L. Berger, The Social Reality of Religion 
(London, 1969), pp. 38-60. 

10 J. M. Roberts, The Mythology of the Secret Societies (London, 1972), pp. 90-1 17. The 
sects of the eighteenth century are discussed at length in Auguste Viatte, Les sources 
occultes du romantisme, 2 vols. (Paris, 1928). 

11 Frances Yates, The Rosicrucian Enlightenment (London, 1972), p. 40. 

12 Klaus Epstein, The Genesis of German Conservatism (Princeton, 1966), pp. 84-111. 



234 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

13 Christopher McIntosh, The Rosy Cross Unveiled (Wellingborough, 1980), pp. 72- 
100. Cf. Horst Moller, ‘Die Bruderschaft der Gold- und Rosenkreuzer’, in 
Freimaurer und Geheimbiinde im 18. Jchrhundert in Mitteleuropa , ed. Helmut Reinalter 
(Frankfurt/Main, 1983), pp. 199-239. 

14 The Rosicrucian Society in Germany and Hartmann’s contact with Reuss are 
discussed in Ellic Howe and Helmut Moller, ‘Theodor Reuss. Irregular Free- 
masonry in Germany, 1900-23’, Ars Quatuor Coronatorum 91 (1978), 28-47. 

1 5 ‘Geheime Figuren der Rosenkreuzer aus dem 1 6ten und 1 7 ten Jahrhundert’, Neue 
Metaphysische Rundschau [8] 12 (1905), 41-8, 92-8. 

16 Norman Cohn documents the case in his study of European accusatory traditions. 
He argues that the charges of satanism fall within a stereotypical procedure, 
whereby social opponents are first vilified according to religious criteria, in order 
that they may be legitimately exterminated. This kind of thinking is also evident in 
List’s vicious account of the Catholic Church. Norman Cohn, Europe’s Inner Demons 
(London, 1975), pp. 75-98. 

17 Roberts, op. cit., p. 99. For a comprehensive study oftheoccultTemplar tradition, 
see Peter Partner, The Murdered Magicians (Oxford, 1982). 

18 Josef von Hammer-Purgstall, ‘Mysterium Baphometis revelatum’, Fundgruben des 
Orients 6 (1818), 3-120, 5 tables. 

19 Coleman, op. cit., pp. 357, 365. 

20 Franz Hartmann and Karl Kellner (1851-1905), an industrial chemist with occult 
interests, collaborated in the production of ligno-sulphite, a by-product in paper 
manufacture, which Hartmann used to treat patients suffering from tuberculosis 
at his sanatorium in Hallein. Franz Hartmann, Uber eine neue Heilmethode cur Heilung 
von Lungentuberkulose (Leipzig, 1893). Further details about Kellner and the OTO in 
Ellic Howe and Helmut Moller, ‘Theodor Reuss. Irregular Freemasonry in 
Germany, 1900-23’, Ars 'Quatuor Coronatorum 91 (1978), 28-47. 

21 While Franz Hartmann’s acquaintance with occult Templarism derived from a 
quasi-masonic background, Lanz von Liebenfels was inspired by the poetic and 
neo-romantic image of the Templars which was current at the turn of the century. 
List was indebted to both influences. 

22 GLB 2 (1908), p. 65. 

23 Guido List, ‘Das Mittelalter im Armanentum’, in GLB 2, second edition [1913], pp. 
89-99 (p. 97). 

24 GLB 5 (1910), p. 110; GLB 2a (191 1), p. 4. 

25 Guido List, ‘Das Mittelalter im Armanentum’, in GLB 2, second edition [1913], pp. 
89-99 (pp. 90-6). 

26 J. Lanz von Liebenfels, ‘Guido von List’, Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und 
Schicksalsforschung 2 (1927), 74-89 (p. 76). 

27 GLB 2a (1911), pp. 70ff. 

28 ibid., p. 86 f. 



235 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

29 The Tree of Life is a complex cosmological model, which symbolizes the ten 
emanations of God, the ten aspects of the manifested universe and the ten modes 
of human awareness, in a sequence of increasing transcendence. The three highest 
sefiroth , as each of the ten stations are known, lie across ‘a veil of the abyss’, which 
denotes their special esoteric nature. The T ree forms the theological basis of the 
Jewish mystical tradition known as cabbalism, which began to enter the Western 
occult tradition during the sixteenth century and inspired the theosophical and 
Rosicrucian subcultures of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The first 
application of the Tree to the grade scheme of an order is recorded in Magister 
Pianco (i.e. Hans Carl von Ecker und Eckhoffen), Der Rosenkreuzer in seiner Blosse 
(Amsterdam, 1781), which was subsequently used for the structure of the 
Rosicrucian Society in England (est. 1866) and the derivative Hermetic Order of 
the Golden Dawn. Ellic Howe, ‘Fringe Masonry in England, 1870-85’ An Quatuor 
Coronatorum 85 (1972), 242-80 (p. 251) and Ellic Howe, The Magicians of the Golden 
Dawn (London, 1972; reprinted 1985), pp. 22-5. 

30 GLB 2a (191 1), pp. 134-40. 

31 Joachim Besser, ‘Die Vorgeschichte des Nationalsozialismus in neuem Licht’, Die 
Pforte 2 (1950), 763-84 (p. 772). 

32 Letters from followers to Guido List are reprinted in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 148-97. 

33 Bernhard Koerner’s tide is mentioned in Fritz Meier-Gostenhof to Johannes 
Hering, letter dated 11 December [1919?], Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1244. 
List used his title at the end of his obituary to Friedrich Oskar Wannieck, D-ML, II, 
650. The correspondence between these titles and the cabbalistic hierarchy of the 
Armanenschaft is set out in GLB 2a (191 1), p. 1 38 f. 

34 A photograph of Winter’s grave is printed in D-ML, II, plate facing p. 600. 
Wannieck’s tumulus is illustrated in GLB 6 [1914], plate between pp. 420 and 421, 
and discussed in Friedrich Wannieck to Guido List, letter dated 12 December 
1914, in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 183-6. Elsa Hauerstein’s headstone is illustrated in 
Imaginarium NT, plate 165. 

35 List discussed the occult interests of the Habsburg emperors Frederick IV, 
Maximilian and Rudolf II together with an esoteric interpretation of Frederick’s 
imperial motto A.E.I.O.U. (usually held to stand for Austria eritin orbe ultima) and 
concluded that the Habsburgs must have been initiates of the Armanenschaft since 
the earliest days of the dynasty. Interestingly enough, Lanz von Liebenfels also 
celebrated Frederick IV and Maximilian as Ariosophists, see below p. 212. List 
described the reigning emperor, Franz Josef I (1848-1916) as the ‘crowned sage’, 
an explicit reference to the putative Armanism of contemporary Austrian royalty. 
GLB 5 (1910), p. 295f. A further indication ofList’s strong monarchical sentiment 
may be deduced from an episode when he and Captain Friedrich Kunitz, a List 
Society member serving with the army at Sarajevo in Austrian-occupied Bosnia, 
visited Schonbrunn Palace in May 1914. Kunitz saluted the window of the 
emperor, a gesture which filled List with emotion and reverence for the ‘armanist’ 
dedication of the officer class to the crown. Balzli, op. cit., p. 90 f. 

36 Ellic Howe, ‘Fringe Masonry in England, 1870—85’, Ars Quatuor Coronatorum 85 
(1972), 242-80 (p. 267). 



236 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 



6. THE SECRET HERITAGE 

1 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder, first edition (Berlin, 1891), pp. 
37-40; D-ML, I, 117-37. 

2 Guido List, D-ML, I, 29, 35-9. 

3 Guido List, D-ML, I, 215, 222, 260-75. 

4 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder, first edition (Berlin, 1891), pp. 
183-93. 

5 Guido List, D-ML, I, 67-72. List repeatedly quoted the letter of Pope Gregory the 
Great to Mellitus of Canterbury, which urged the assimilation and appropriation 
of pagan sanctuaries and rituals to communicate Christian doctrine, as prime 
evidence of a Wotanist background to any Christian institution, ibid., I, 140f. 

6 Guido List, D-ML, I, 72-7. 

7 See List’s account of the legends surrounding the Agnesbriindl near Vienna and 
his interpretation of the story of Ritter Georg and the dog-woman, related to him 
by an old lady at the Schalaburg in the 1860s. Guido List, D-ML , I, 84-116, 294- 
327. 

8 GLB 3 ( 1 908), passim. 

9 According to List, the Armanist refugees in Iceland were the authors of the Edda. 
GLB 3 (1908), p. 38. 

10 Guido List, ‘Von der Wuotanspriesterschaft’, Das Zwanzigste Jahrhundert 4 (1893), 
119-26, 242-51, 343-52, 442-51 (p. 250). 

11 The derivation ofboth terms remains obscure. List firstused them in GLB 1 (1908). 
Although the ‘sacred secret Eight’ sounds like a hidden council of elders, List’s 
usage indicates a language or some other means of storing, safeguarding and 
communicating information. GLB 2, second edition [1913], p. 53. 

12 Guido List, ‘Ursprung und Wesen derWappen’, in Der Sammler IS (1891), 54—6, 
65-7. 

13 GLB 1 (1908), pp. 40-2 and diagram, facing p. 16. 

14 GLB 5 (1910), pp. 152-4. 

15 ibid., p. 159. 

16 ibid., p. 255. 

17 ibid., p. 1 13. 

18 ibid., pp. 214, 216, 227ff, 257f, 267. 

19 GLB 2a (1911), p. 45. 

20 GLB 5 (1910), p. 304. 

21 Details of these groups may be found in Philipp Stauff, Das deutsche Wehrbuch 
(Berlin, 1912), p. 1 52 f, and Anon., Deutschvolkischer Katechismus, 2 vols. (Leipzig, 
1929-31), II, 164-70. 

22 Guido List, ‘Die symbolischen Bildwerke am Riesenthore der Stefanskirche zu 



237 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Wien’, Ijiufers Allgemeine Kunstchronik 12 (1889), 250-1, 283-4, 307-10 and 
‘Ursprung und Symbolik der Freimaurerei’, in GLB 2a (191 1), pp. 200—15. This 
article had been initially published in the Pan-German periodical Der Scherer , 
edited by Ottokar Stauf von der March. 

23 GLB 1 (1908), diagram facing p. 16. 

24 A recent example is Fulcanelli, Le mystere des cathedrales (London, 1971). 

25 W. D. Robson-Scott, The literary Background of the Gothic Revival in Germany (Oxford, 
1965). 

26 The chief representative of this sensational Gothic genre using the vehmgericht 
was Veit Weber (1 762-1837). His works and his romantic image of the Middle Ages 
are discussed in Carl Mtiller-Fraureuth, Die Ritter- und Rduberromane (Halle, 1894), 
pp. 8-35 and in Walther Pantenius, ‘Das Mittelalter in Leonhard Wachters (Veit 
Webers) Romanen’ (unpublished D. Phil, thesis, University of Leipzig, 1 904). J. W. 
Appell, Die Ritter-, Rduber- and Schauerromantik (Leipzig, 1 859) gives a general survey 
of Gothic literature during the late eighteenth century in Germany. 

27 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landsckaftsbilder, first edition (Berlin, 1891), p. 96. 

28 Guido List, ‘Die Schalaburg’, in D-ML, I, 294-327; GLB 1 (1908), p. 49. 

29 Guido List, ‘Der Einsiedel vom Hohenstein bei Rothenkreuz’, in D-ML , 1 54-205. 
This story was first published in the Deutscher Volkskalender des Bundes der Deutschen 
Nordm'ahrens (Olomouc, 1905). The league was founded in 1886 as a Pan-German 
organization for the German settlements in North Moravia. Hermann Brass, a List 
Society member, was its chairman in the period before the First World War. Details 
of the league mav be found in Philipp Stauff, Das deutsche Wehrbuch (Berlin, 1912), 
p. 52). 

7. THE GERMAN MILLENNIUM 

1 Fritz Saxl, ‘The revival of late antique astrology’, in Lectures, 2 vols. (London, 1957), 
I, 73-84. 

2 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landsckaftsbilder, first edition (Berlin, 1891 ), passim. 

3 H. R. Ellis Davidson, Gods and Myths of Northern Europe (Harmondsworth, 1964), p. 
37 f. List discussed these myths in an apocalyptic context. GLB 2 (1908), pp. 46, 70 
and GLB 4 (1909), pp. 4, 6. 

4 This cameo is intended only to delineate the typical motifs in the apocalypses of 
Daniel, Ezra, Baruch and the Book of Revelation. Details concerning the identity 
and nature of the evil spirit and the messiah, as well as the manner of their 
manifestation, vary among the authors of this long religious and literary tradition. 
The term ‘millennium’ derives from the Book of Revelation, which describes the 
establishment of a terrestrial kingdom of God lasting a thousand years before the 
eternal dispensation dawns. However, among historians and sociologists the word 
denotes the new age, irrespective of its duration. Although messianic beliefs and 
millenarianism often coincide historically, the two ideas do not necessarily imply 
one another. For surveys of apocalyptic literature and discussions, see The 
Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament, edited by R. H. Charles, 2 vols. 
(Oxford, 1913), passim-, E. Hennecke, New Testament Apocrypha, 2 vols. (London, 



238 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 



1965), II, 582ff; Norman Cohn, The Pursuit of the Millennium (London, 1957); Bryan R. 
Wilson, ‘Millennialism in comparative perspective’, in Millennial Dreams in Action , 
edited by Sylvia L. Thrupp, Comparative Studies in Society and History 2 (The 
Hague, 1962), pp. 93-114; Yonina Talmon, ‘Pursuit of the Millennium: the 
relation between religious and social change’, Archives Europeenes de Sociologie 3 
(1962), 125-48, and ‘Millenarian movements’, Archives Europeenes de Sociologie 7 
(1966), 159-200. 

5 Norman Cohn, The Pursuit of the Millennium, third edition (New York, 1970), pp. 29- 
36, 53-70. 

6 Yonina Talmon, ‘Millenarian movements’. Archives Europeenes de Sociologie 7 ( 1 966), 
159-200 (p. 1 7 9 F) . 

7 GLB 2a (1911), pp. 25-7. 

8 GLB 2a (1911), pp. 40-3. 

9 Peter G.J. Pulzer, The Rise of Political Anti-Semitism in Germany and Austria (New York, 
1964), p. 294. 

10 GLB 2a (1911), p. 53. 

11 Pulzer, op. cit., p. 177. 

12 GLB 2a (1911), p. 48f. 

13 ibid., p. 1 6 f. 

14 Guido List, Die Religion der Ario-Germanen (Zurich, 1910), p. 92f. List was obviously 
familiar with this system of Hindu cosmology from Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, Die 
Geheimlehre, 2 vols. (Leipzig, 1897-1901). A Mahayuga, or complete cycle, lasted 
4,320,000 years and was composed of four yugas of successively shorter duration. 
The shortest of these, the Kaliyuga, lasted 432,000 years and represented the most 
decadent phase of the Mahayuga. Within an apocalyptic scheme, the Kaliyuga 
could be regarded as the period of woes, provided that one ignored the cyclical 
nature of Hindu chronology, which denies ultimate salvation. 

15 Guido List, ‘Uber die Moglichkeit eines ewigen Weltfriedens’, Prana 7 (1917), in 
Balzli, op. cit., pp. 134-8 (p. 135). 

16 Guido List, ‘Neuzeitliche Einherier’, Osterreichische Illustrierte Rundschau 4 (1916), in 
Balzli, op. cit., pp. 1 16-24 (p. 1 17), and ‘Wer ist der Starke von Oben?’, Prana 7 
(1917), in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 125-33 (p. 128). 

17 The letter from Tarnhari was dated 11 November 1911, in Balzli, op. cit., p. 146. 

Tarnhari’s real name was Ernst Lauterer. His speculations revolved around the 
derivation of his name from the three runes Laf-tar-ar ( ), which spelt 

the word ‘Ulaftarhari’, allegedly a cover-name for Wotan. Tarnhari also traced his 
ancestry to a sixteenth-century family Lautrer von Dofering zurn Raidenstein, 
whose blazon showed a rampant lion. He claimed that the Laf-tar-ar runes were 
concealed in the body of this heraldic lion. Tarnhari, Aus den Traditionen derLaf-tar- 
ar-Sippe der 'Lauterer’ (Diessen, [1915]). Tarnhari published another pamphlet, An 
unsere Getreuen (Diessen, [1914]). After the war he was associated with Alfred Bass in 
the Nationale Kanzlei at Leipzig which issued a Hakenkreuz-Rundbrief (1920) and 
also collaborated with Dietrich Eckart, the volkisch publicist at Munich. 



239 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

18 GLB 2, second edition [1913], p. 98 f. 

19 Friedrich Wannieck to Guido List, letter dated 12 December 1914, in Balzli, op. 
cit. , pp. 183-6. 

20 GLB 2a (1911), p. 81 f. 

21 ibid., p. 107. 

22 An extensive bibliography of conservative revolutionary literature may be 
consulted in Armin Mohler, Die komewative Revolution in Deutschland 1918—1932 
(Darmstadt, 1972). 

23 This profuse pamphlet literature concerning ‘spiritual’ anti-Westernism in 
Germany during 1914 and 1915 is discussed by Fritz Ringer, The Decline of the 
German Mandarins (Cambridge, Mass., 1969), pp. 180-99 and Klemens von 
Klemperer, Germany’s New Conservatism (Princeton, 1968), pp. 47-55. For the 
reactions of the cultural pessimists to the war, see Fritz Stern, The Politics of Cultural 
Despair (Berkeley, 1974), pp. 205-11. 

24 Guido List, ‘Ostarrede (21 April 1915)’, in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 69-77. 

25 These references may be found in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 149, 155, 143, 34. 

26 Michael Barkun, Disaster and the Millennium (New Haven, 1974), p. 163. 

27 Balzli, op. cit., p. 73. 

28 Medieval German apocalyptic fantasies attaching to the figure of an emperor are 
discussed in Norman Cohn, The Pursuit of the Millennium (New York, 1970), pp. 30- 
3, 108-26. 

29 GLB 2, second edition [1913], p. 97 f. 

30 ibid., p. 95. 

31 Guido List, Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder , first edition (Berlin, 1891), p. 88. 

32 The speculations about the reincarnated nationalist revolutionaries appear in the 
articles, ‘Neuzeitliche Einherier’ and ‘Wer ist der Starke von Oben?’, in Balzli, op. 
cit., pp. 116-24, 125-33. 

8. JORG LANZ VON LIEBENFELS AND THEOZOOLOGY 

1 Wilfried Daim, Der Mann, der Hitler die Ideengab (Munich, 1958); RudolfJ. Mund, 
Jorg Lam v, Lieberfels und der Neue Tempter Orden (Stuttgart, 1976). 

2 See Appendix A for the genealogy of Adolfjosef Lanz. It is interesting to note that 
his younger brother, Herwik Lanz, also indulged in similar fantasies. He claimed 
to have been born at San Giovanni on 10 June 1874 (pre-dated). Kurschners 
Deutscher Literatur- (Calender 36 (1914), p. 1003. 

3 J. Lanz von Liebenfels, Arithmosophikon 19 (Thalwyl, [1949]), p. 725 f. Documentary 
evidence suggests that Lanz did not esteem the Templars until after 1905. See 
below p. 108, note 9. 

4 For details of Lanz’s monastic career, see Daim, op. cit., pp. 250, 252. 

5 Fr. G . . ., O.C. [i.e. Lanz], ‘Berthold v. Treun’, Berichte und Mittheilungen des Alterthums- 



240 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

Vereins zu Wien 30 (1894), 137-140; J. Lanz, ‘Das Necrologium Sancrucense 
Modernum’, Archiv fur Osterreichische Geschichte 89 (1900), 247-354. 

6 Fr. G . . ., ‘Berthold v. Treun’, p. 138. 

7 Georg Lanz to Heiligenkreuz Abbey authorities, letter dated 1 1 September 1899, 
Heiligenkreuz Abbey Archive; P. Hermann Watzl to the author, letter dated 19 
November 1978. 

8 Daim, op. cit., p. 252. 

9J. Lanz-Liebenfels, Katholizismus wider Jesuitismus (Frankfurt, 1903); Das Breve 
‘ Dominus ac redemptor noster’ (Frankfurt, [1904]); Der Taxil-Schwindel (Frankfurt, 
[1904]). 

10 Ostara III, 1 (1930), p. [v], 

1 1 The alleged marriage of Lanz is discussed by Theodor Czepl. Daim, op. cit., p. 44. 

12 A description of these inventions and their evaluation by Professor G. Heinrich 
may be found in Daim, op. cit., p. 11 Of. 

13 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘Die Urgeschichte der Kunste’, Politisch-Anthropologische Revue 2 
( 1 903), 134-56. Although there is no record of a doctoral thesis submitted by Lanz 
at the University of Vienna, it is still possible that the degree was conferred by 
another Austrian university. 

14J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘Anthropozoon biblicum’, Vierteljahrsschrift fur Bibelkunde 1 
(1903), 307-16, 317-55, 429-69 (p. 321); ibid. 2 (1904), 26-60, 3 14-37, 395-412. 
This periodical is hereafter cited as VfB. 

1 5 Lanz’s sources for these archaeological finds were Sir Austen Henry Layard, 
Nineveh and its Remains , 2 vols. (London, 1 849), Inscriptions in the Cuneiform Character 
from Assyrian Monuments (London, 1851), and Eberhard Schrader, Keilinschriftliche 
Bibliothek, 6 vols. (Berlin, 1887-1900). Both artefacts are in the British Museum, 
Department of Western Asiatic Antiquities, Nos. 124562 and 118885. 

16J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘Antropozoon biblicum’, VfB 1 (1903), 322-4. 

17 ibid., 341-55. 

18 ibid., 343-4. 

1 9 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, Theozoologie oder die Kunde von den Sodoms-Afflingen und dem Gotter- 
Elektron (Vienna, 1905), p. 26f. This text is hereafter cited as TZ. 

20 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, TZ , pp. 28-33. 

21 ibid., pp. 35, 52, 56 f. 

22 Lanz’sfirst mention ofN-rays in ‘Anthropozoon biblicum’, VfB 1 (1903), p. 455n. 
His first mention of radium-rays in ibid., 2(1904), p. 332. He discusses these theories 
in TZ, pp. 83-5. 

23 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, TZ, pp. 79f, 85, 90f. Wilhelm Bolsche had suggested that the 
pineal gland represented the evolutionary residue of a magnetic third eye, which 
was more apparent in the prehistoric saurian reptiles. Quoted by J. Lanz- 
Liebenfels, ‘Anthropozoon biblicum’, VfB 1 (1903), p. 354. Bolsche, a popular 
scientific writer, probably took this idea from theosophy. Madame Blavatsky had 



241 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

also mystified the gland as a magical third eye, a speculation which she may have 
borrowed from Rene Descartes, who sought the locus of the soul in the gland. The 
Secret Doctrine , second edition, 2 vols. (London, 1888), II, 299f. 

24 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, TZ, pp. 1 14ff, 140, 1 20 ff. The Pistis Sophia was the subject of 
learned discussion in the 1890 s. Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics, edited by James 
Hastings, 13 vols. (Edinburgh, 1908-26), X, 45—8. 

25 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, TZ, pp. 124-8. 

26 ibid., p. 133. 

27 ibid., pp. 1 42 ff. 

28 ibid., pp. 147-52. 

29 For Himmler’s eugenic policies see Clarissa Henry and Marc Hillel, Children of the 
SS (London, 1975) and Felix Kersten, The Kersten Memoirs 1940-1945 (London, 
1956), pp. 74-82, 176-83. Descriptions ofhis Eastern policies in Josef Ackermann, 
Heinrich Himmler als Ideologe (Gottingen, 1970), pp. 195—231 and Kersten, ibid., pp. 
132-140. 

30 ibid., p. 1 58 f. 

31 ibid., p. 160. 

32 ibid., p. 1 1 2 f. 

33 Akademischer Verlag pamphlet, dated [1905]. 

34 Mund, op. cit., pp. 22ff, 2 1 0 f. 

35 Ostara 1, 6 (July 1906), p. [21]. 

36 These codes had been edited by Sir Williamjones, Institutes of Hindu Law (Calcutta, 
1794) and translated into German byjohann Christoph Hiittner, Hindu-Gesetzbuch 
(Weimar, 1797). The codes had been examined in a racist context by F. Gernandt, 
‘Aus dem Hindu-Gesetzbuch des Manu’, Politisch-Anthropologische Revue 3 (1904), 
264-8, which may well have been Lanz’s source of inspiration. The Sanskrit term 
candala (Tschandale), which denoted the lowest caste of untouchables, denoted to 
Lanz the mongrelized racial inferiors and lower social classes of modern times. 
Ostara I, 22 (April 1908), pp. 6, 16. 

37 The first issue of Ostara was published at Graz, but the periodical was henceforth 
published at Rodaun until mid-1913, by which time sixty-six numbers had 
appeared. The periodical was then published at Modling until 1917 (with No. 89), 
when the first series ( Ostara I) was discontinued. A second abortive series (Ostara II) 
was begun at Magdeburg in 1922, but abandoned after several numbers, and the 
third series ( Ostara III) was published in Vienna from 1927 to 1931 under the 
patronage of Johann Walthari Wolfl. 

38 Harald Gravell van Jostenoode, Ostara 1, 6 (July 1906), pp. 3, 10, 12f. 

39 The works cited by Gravell were Annie Besant, Der Stammbaum der Menschen 
(Leipzig, 1907) and Rudolf Steiner, Blut ist einganz besonderer Saft (Berlin, 1907), 
both of which reflected the theosophical interest in racist ideas. Harald Gravell van 
Jostenoode, Ostara I, 25 (July 1908), p. lOf. 



242 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

40 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, Die Theosophie und die assyrischen ‘Menschentiere’ (Berlin, 1907), p. 
11, figures 4, 5. The maps were taken from Melchior Neumayr, Erdgeschichte , 
second edition, 2 vols. (Leipzig, 1895), and William Scott-Elliot, Das untergangene 
Lemuria (Leipzig, 1905). 

41 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, Die Theosophie und die assyrischen 'Menschentiere' (Berlin, 1907), p. 

22 . 

42 ibid., pp. 28-32. 

43 The Monist League was founded at Jena in 1906 by Ernst Haeckel as an 
organization of Social Darwinists. Gasman notes that the League boasted a 
membership of some six thousand in over forty groups distributed throughout 
Germany and Austria. It is likely that Lanz became familiar with its doctrines 
through the Vienna branch. Gasman places Lanz ‘on the lunatic fringe of the social 
Darwinist movement’. Daniel Gasman, The Scientific Origins of National Socialism 
(London, 1971), pp. 20ff, 153 and passim. This is true insofar as many of Lanz’s 
authorities, including Wilhelm Bolsche, Ludwig Woltmann, and Willibald 
Hentschel, were Social Darwinists. 

44 Ostara 1, 35 (1910), pp. 1-5. 

45 Ostara I, 78 (1915), pp. lOff. Lanz subsequently extended this roll of ariosophical 
initiates to include numerous mystics, pietists, and occultists since antiquity. See 
Appendix C. 

46 Ellic Howe, Astrology and the Third Reich (Wellingborough, 1984), pp. 78-103. 

47 Ostara I, 78 (1915), recto rear cover. 

48 Ostara I, 79 (1915), pp. 15— [ 18]. The titles included: Arthur Grobe-Wutischsky, Der 
Weltkrieg 1914 in der Prophetic (Leipzig, 1915); Karl Brandler-Pracht, H'duser-Tabellen 
von 40°-56° geographischer Breite (Leipzig, 1910); Albert Kniepf, Die Weissagungen des 
altfranzosischen Sehers Michel Nostradamus und der heutige Krieg (Hamburg, 1914). 
Other reviews covered G. W. Surya, Modeme Rosenkreuzer , second edition (Leipzig, 
1914); Charles Leadbeater, Der sichtbare und unsichtbare Mensch (Leipzig, 1908). The 
following issue of Ostara reviewed the first German work of the German- American 
theosophist Max Heindel, who had studied under Rudolf Steiner at Berlin before 
emigrating. Max Heindel, Die Weltanschauung der Rosenkreuzer (Leipzig, 1913). 
Details of Heindel in Ellic Howe, op. cit., p. 84f. Lanz also recommended the 
periodicals Prana, Theosophie and Zum licht. Ostara I, 80 (1915), pp. 1 6— [ 1 8]. These 
references give a clear indication of how widespread was Lanz’s interest in 
theosophical and occult literature. 

49 Ostara I, 80 (1915), p. 8f. 

50 Ostara I, 81 (1915), pp. 12-18. The idea of the Church of the Holy Spirit derives 
from the apocalyptic thought of Joachim of Fiore (r.l 135-1202), who described a 
temporal scheme of three ages, each of which corresponded to one of the persons 
of the Trinity. The first age was the Age of the Father, a dispensation characterized 
by a demand for strict obedience to the laws of God; the second age was the Age of 
the Son, a time of piety and faith in the gospel; the third age was the Age of the Holy 
Spirit which would witness the transformation of the whole world into a vast 
monastery of monks full ofjov, love, and freedom. Marjorie Reeves Joachim of Fiore 
and the Prophetic Future (London, 1976). On Joachite prophecy in relation to 



243 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

millenarianism, Norman Cohn, The Pursuit of the Millennium (New York, 1970), pp. 
108 ff. Lanz discussed such prophecy, implying that the ordofuturus of Joachim was 
the parousia of New Tern plarism. Ostara I, 78 (1915), p. 4f. The site of Vienna as 
the origin of the millennium was consonant with Lanz’s belief in the ariosophical 
mission of the Habsburg dynasty. He found some justification for this statement in 
an interpretation of two enigmatic Nostradamus references, according to which 
the intersection of the 48° latitude and the ‘German mountains’ (in Lanz’s opinion, 
a certain ridge in the Wienerwald) defined a new spiritual source-point on the 
planet. 

51 Ostara III, 4 (1928), pp. 2f, 13f. 

52 Friedrich Heer has also suggested that the emotional inspiration of Hitler’s adult 
dreams of world-dominion and Caesarism may have derived from his childhood 
experience of South German Catholic pomp and pageantry at Passau between 
1892 and 1895. Friedrich Heer, Der Glaube des Adolf Hitler (Munich, 1968), pp. 19- 
21 . 

9. THE ORDER OF THE NEW TEMPLARS 

1 See Appendix A for the genealogy of Adolf Josef Lanz. 

2 The first traceable use of the name ‘Liebenfels’ by Lanz occurred in early 1 903. Cf. 
DrJ. Lanz- Liebenfels, ‘Die Urgeschichte der Kunste' , Politisch-Anthropologische Revue 
2 (May 1903), 134-56 (p. 1 34). His earliest use of the tide ‘von’ between the names 
dates from 1911. See letter-heads, Lanz to August Strindberg, letter dated 20 
September 1911, Royal Library, Stockholm, and Lanz to Johannes Hering, letter 
dated 6 September 1911, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1229. 

3 See the articles ‘Lanz von Liebenfels’ and ‘Liebenfels’ in Historisches-Biographisches 
Lexikon der Schweiz, 7 vols. (Neuenburg, 1927), IV, 606 f, 677 f; U. Dikenmann, ‘Hans 
Lanz von Liebenfels, ein mittelalterlicher Emporkommling’, Thurgauische Beitrage 
21 (1911), 34-48. Full genealogies in J. Kindler von Knobloch, Oberbadisches 
Geschlechterbuch , 3 vols. (Heidelberg, 1905), II, 46 If, 504 f, 508 f. 

4 C. von Lantz to August Naf, letters dated 5 July and 29 August 1878, 
Stadtbibliothek Vadiana, St Gallen, MS 145/169-70. This officer had received the 
Cross of the Franz Josef Order in 1874, Kriegsarchiv, Vienna, GASM 1874-40. 

5 Hermann Hermann, Genealogie und Heraldik biirgerlicher Familien Osterreich- Ungams , 
2 vols. (Vienna, 1899), I, 181. 

6 Wilfried Daim, Der Mann, der Hitler die Ideengab (Munich, 1958), p. 44. No positive 
evidence for a marriage has been found. Only a certain Moritz Felicetti von 
Liebenfels of Graz could be discovered in a contemporary Austrian directory of 
nobility. His family was of Italian origin and was first invested with the title ‘von 
Liebenfels’ in 1745. Since their blazon is quite different to that of the Swiss- 
Swabian family, which Lanz adopted, there is no reason to think that there was any 
relationship between the families. Karl Friedrich von Frank zu Dofering, Alt - 
Osterreichisches Adels-Lexikon, 1 vol. (Vienna, 1928), I, 75 and Adelsarchiv, Vienna, 
Ministry of the Interior, Facs. 431 A. 

7 Rudolf J. Mund, Ahnennachweis von Joerg Lanz von Liebenfels Grander des Ordo Novi 
Templi (ONT), Das andere Kreuz, 1 (Vienna, [1980]. 



244 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

8 For a succinct analysis of this neo-romantic culture, see Jost Hermand, ‘Gralsmotive 
um die Jahrhundertwende’, Vierteljahrsschrift fur Literaturwissenschaft uni Geistes- 
geschichte 36 (1962), 521-43. 

9 J. von Lanzenfels (i.e. Lanz), ‘Der heilige Gral’, Stein der Weisen 20 (1907), 218-26. 
Lanz had regarded the T emplars negauvely until as late as 1 905 . The allegations of 
blasphemy and sodomy, levelled against the Templars at their trial, led him to 
identify them as devotees of the beast-cults. J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘Anthropozoon 
biblicum’, VfB 1 (1903), p. 321; ibid. 2 (1904), p. 410 and TZ, pp. 21, 51. 

10 J. von Lanzenfels, ‘Der heilige Gral’, Stein der Weisen 20 (1907), 218-26 (p. 226). 

11 Ostara I, 69 (1913), pp. 12-16. 

1 2 Although Lanz claimed to have first viewed Burg Werfenstein for the purposes of 
the ONT in 1896, accompanied by Amand von Schweiger-Lerchenfeld, author 
and editor of Stein der Weisen, and Alois Fischer, an official at court, and, 
furthermore, that he founded the ONT on Christmas Day 1900 with his two 
brothers, Herwik and Friedolin, these references must be treated with caution. J. 
Lanz von Liebenfels, Arithmosophikon 19 (Thalwyl, [1949]), pp. 726ff; Georg Lanz 
von Liebenfels, Regularium Fratrum Ordinis Novi Templi (Werfenstein, 1921), p. 30. In 
the first place, Lanz was still denouncing the Templars in 1905, see above p.108, 
note 9. He cannot therefore have been wanting to emulate the order in 1896. 
Secondly, he stated that the party of 1896 had met August Strindberg at the 
Gasthof zum Werfenstein in Struden, while they were waiting for the castellan, but 
such a meeting is disproved by the contents of his own letter to Strindberg, dated 
20 September 1911, Royal Library, Stockholm. An alternative explanation would 
be that the dates are authentic, but that he did not yet conceive of his chivalrous 
order in the Templar tradition. 

13 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘DerOrdendesneuenTempels’, Ostara 1, 18 (December 1907), 
p. 15f. 

14 Ostara III, 1 (1930), p. [iv], 

15 Franz Herndl, Die Trutzburg (Leipzig, 1909), p. 25 If. These fleur-de-lis, which 
recur in ONT heraldry, may derive from the blazon of the Muntprat family, which 
was associated with the Lanz von Liebenfels by two marriages in the sixteenth 
century. Gustav A. Seyler, Abgestorbener Wiirttemberger Adel (Nuremberg 1911), p. 
200 and plate 109. 

1 6 See the personal seals on his letters tojohannes Hering, dated 22 September 1 909, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1229, and to Philipp Stauff in late 1909, Bundes- 
archiv, Koblenz, NS26/512. He also used a chivalrous letter-head depicting a 
visored helm crowned with a cardinal’s hat and an eagle wing. See his letters to 
August Strindberg, dated 20 September 1911, Royal Library, Stockholm, and to 
Johannes Hering, dated 6 September 1912, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1229. 
The ONT seal showed a mounted knight in armour decorated with swastikas, 
Ostara I, 35 (1910), recto front cover. 

17 J. Lanz-Liebenfels, ‘Geschichte der Burg Werfenstein’, in Ludwig Commenda, 
Neuer illustrierter Fiihrer durch Grein und Umgebung (Grein, 1910), pp. 84-95. 

18 Herndl, op. cit., p. 257f. 



245 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

19 Georg Lanz von Liebenfels, Regidarium Fratrum Ordinis Novi Templi (Werfenstein, 
1921), pp. 1-16, Hereafter cited as Regularium. 

20 Ostara I, 26-3 1 . 

21 Regularium , pp. 4-6. 

22 ibid., p. 8f. 

23 ibid., p. 7f. 

24 ibid., pp. 9-12. 

25 Ostara I, 50 (1911), recto rear cover. 

26 Regularium , p. 12. However, since this source claims an investiture for Amand von 
Schweiger-Lerchenfeld in August 1904, it may be considered unreliable in terms 
of chronology. 

27 Lanz added the sigla PONT to his name in a letter to Johannes Hering, dated 6 
September 1912, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1229. 

28 Fra Erwin, ‘Templeisenlehre’, Ostara I, 69 (1913), p. 15f. Other order sigla in 
Ostara I, 79 (1915), pp. 15ff and Ostara I, 71, second edition (1918), verso rear 
cover. 

29 Ostara I, 82 (1915), pp. 4-13; Ostara I, 88 (1916), pp. 8-13. 

30 These paintings are illustrated in Ostara I, 82 (1915), p. 1 and Ostara I, 88 (1916), 

P . i. 

31 Fra Dedef, ‘An St Bernhard v. Clairvaux’, Ostara I, 78 (1915), p. 16; ‘Templeisen- 
Andachtim Felde’, Ostara I, 79 (1915), p. 17; ‘Wir halten still’, Ostara I, 80(1915), p. 
16; Fra Curt, ‘lm Fieber*, Ostara I, 79 (1915), p. 15. 

32 Fra Aemilius, ‘Der Sang vom Nibelungenstrom’ and Fra Detlef, ‘Burg und Hain 
von Werfenstein’, Ostara I, 88 (1916), p. 4f. These poems are reprinted in 
Appendix D as examples of New Templar verse, 

33 Imaginarium NT, plates 71, 73, 154, 1 1 2a and 164b. Lanz’s exact relationship with 
Strindberg is controversial. The famous Swedish writer was for a time married to 
Frieda Uhl, whose family owned a small estate at Dornach in the Strudengau, 
which he visited between 1 893 and 1896. The district is described in several of his 
works. Lanz wrote that he first met Strindberg at the inn in Struden in 1896. 
Together they walked up the Stillensteinklamm ravine behind Werfenstein and, on 
the following day, visited Baumgartenberg Abbey where they discovered a 
painting of the Portuguese Knights of Christ. Lanz claimed that their conversations 
on religious subjects helped restore Strindberg’s faith. Lanz von Liebjenfels, 
Legendarium, 15 May, pp. 470-2 and Arithmosophikon 19 (Thalwyl, [1949]), pp. 726- 
51 However, Strindberg ascribes his conversion to Swedenborgian visions in 
Inferno (1897). He actually describes a solitary walk up the Klamer Schlucht, 
another gorge about eight kilometres west of Werfenstein, while Lanz’s letters to 
Strindberg assume no familiarity and even enquire whether Strindberg knows the 
Werfenstein area. Lanz to Strindberg, letter dated 20 September 1911, Royal 
Library, Stockholm. 

34 Daim, op. cit., p. 114. 



246 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 



35 Regularium, p. 32. Cf. Legendarium, A 308, p. 171. 

36Jost Hermand, op. cit. 

37 Detlef Schmude, ‘Vorschlag zur Grundung von Siedlungs- und Arbeits-Freiwilligen- 
Korps aus Erwerblosen’, leaflet dated May 1919. Schmude subsequendy published 
two books about his experiences in post-war reconstruction. 

38 Regularium, p. 16. 

39 Ostara II, 1 (1922), p. 11. Schmude’s letter to Lanz, dated c.November 1923, 
attributed the post-war disorder to an ignorance of eugenics amongst the 
leadership of Germany and appealed for a dictator in the form of a Listian ‘Starke 
von Oben’. Tabularium 9 (December 1923), p. 31. 

40 Tabularium 2 (May 1923), p. 6; Tabularium 9 (December 1923), p. 30. Hochbergused 
the order-name Frowin. 

41 These details are recorded in Tabularium 15-17 (June- August 1924), pp. 56-9; 
Tabularium 18-21 (September-November 1924), pp. 63 f, 68, 70; Tabularium 22, 23 
(December 1924-January 1925), p. 76 f; Tabularium 28, 29 (May-July 1925), 
p. 107. 

42 Tabularium 13, 14 (May 1924), p. 47; Tabularium 28, 29 (May-July 1925) p. 107f. 

43 Tabularium 35-7 (April-May 1926), p. 135; Tabularium 38-42 (June-December 

1926) , pp. [142, 147, 149]. 

44 Imaginarium NT, plates 171, 1 7 2. Jorg Weitbrecht (grandson of Konrad Weitbrecht) 
to the author, letter dated 25 January 1979. 

45 Don Evrard Hauerstein (i.e. Georg Hauerstein Jr.), Petena-Handschrift 6, Organum 
NT Vit. (Petena, n.d.), p. lOf. Advertisement for ‘Haus Ostara’, Zeitschrift fur 
Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung 2 (1927), p. 108. 

46 Tabularium 38-42 (June-December 1926), p. [ 1 53 fj; Tabularium 43 (January-April 

1927) , p. 8. 

47 Hertesburg presbytery is illustrated in Imaginarium NT, plate 145. An account of its 
founding and mythical antecedents may be found in Don Evrard Hauerstein, op. 
cit., pp. 12ff. 

48 Petena presbytery is illustrated in Imaginarium NT, plate 136. An account of its 
purchase and mythical antecedents is in Don Evrard Hauerstein, op. cit., pp. 15- 
23. Hauerstein subsequendy started a schismatic order at Petena, the Vitaiis New 
Templars, in November 1941. 

49 Tabularium 15-17 (June-August 1924), pp. 53, 56. 

50 Tabularium 30 (August-September 1925), p. 1 1 4 f; Tabularium 35-7 (April-May 
1926), pp. 13 If, 140. 

51 Lanz to Johann Walthari Wolfl, letter dated 1 May 1926, in Ostara III, 101 (1927), 
p. 2f. Franz Friedrich von Hochberg to Wolfl, letter dated 1 February 1927, in 
Ostara III, 101 (1927), supplement. 

52 Ostara- Rundschau 1 (Whitsun 1931), p. 7f. 

53 Daim, op. cit., p. 161 f. 



247 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

54 A short account of the nationalist associations may be found in C. A. Macartney, 
October Fifteenth- A history of modem Hungary 1929-1945 (Edinburgh, 1956), pp. 28- 
30. Lanz’s involvement is indicated in Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 
(1932), p. 145n. 

55 Tabularium 38-42 (June-December 1926), p. [150]. 

56 Legendarium, A 289, pp. 72-5. B. Raynald, Emerich der Heilige (Budapest, 1930). 

57 Interviews with P. Miklos Kerperand Stephan Bodor(Balatoncsicso)and P. Miklos 
Szalai (Halimba), 9, 10 and 13 August 1978. 

58 Marienkamp-Szent Balazs priory is illustrated in Imaginarium NT, plate 132. The 
heraldic devices and votive paintings in ibid., plates 1, 23, 24, 59, 77, 135. 

59 Mag. Ortwinus, ‘Bei Ihm zu Gast’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 3 
(1928), 218-19; Legendarium, A 289, pp. 75-7. 

60 Szent Kereszt presbytery is illustrated in Imaginarium NT, plate 114. 

10. THE GERMANENORDEN 

1 See pp. 45, 64 f. 

2 Uwe Lohalm, Volkischer Radikalismus (Hamburg, 1970), pp. 58-60. 

3 Peter G. J. Pulzer, The Rise of Political Anti-Semitism in Germany and Austria (New York, 
1964), pp. 88-117. 

4 Richard and Eugen Haug, members of the Jungdeutscher Bund, established a 
Hammerbund at Stuttgart in 1906. J ulius Riittinger, the leader of the apprentice 
division of the DHV, founded a Hammer group at Nuremberg in 1912. Lohalm, 
op. cit. , pp. 56-62. Both the Jugendbilnde (youth organizations of the anti-Semitic 
parties) and the DHV had come into contact with members of the Austrian pan- 
German movement in the 1 890s. This radical nationalist influence helps to explain 
the receptiveness of the successor Hammer groups to Listian ideas. Iris Hamel, 
Volkischer Verband und natimale Gewerkschaft (Frankfurt, 1967), pp. 72-82. 

5 A blueprint for such a Germanic Lebensreform utopia was published by the 
Hammer-Verlag. Willibald Hentschel, Mittgart (Leipzig, 1904). See also Theodor 
Fritsch, ‘Die Erneuerungs-Gemeinde’, Hammer 7 (1908), 461-5 and ‘Grundziige 
der Erneuerungs-Gemeinde’, Hammer 7 (1908), 678-81, 712-17. 

6 Paul Forster, ‘Ein deutsch-volkischer General-Stab’, Hammer 3 (1904), 207-10. 

7 Theodor Fritsch, ‘Vom partei-politischen Antisemitismus’, Hammer 11 (1912), 
153-8. 

8 Theodor Fritsch, ‘Wenn ich der Kaiser war!’, Hammer 11 (1912), 309-11. 

9 An unidentified newspaper photograph, evidently from 1935, with the caption 
‘Griindungstag des Reichshammerbundes’, shows Theodor Fritsch, Julius 
Riittinger, Hermann Pohl, Georg Hauerstein Sr., Karl August Hellwigand fifteen 
other persons, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/887. 

10 Karl August Hellwig, ‘Verfassungdes R.H.B.’, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/888; 
Theodor Fritsch, ‘Richtlinien fur den Reichshammerbund (R.H.B.)’, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/888. 



248 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

1 1 Julius Riittinger, ‘Jahresbericht fur 1912’ and ‘Kassenbericht fur 1912’, Bundes- 
archiv, Koblenz, NS26/888. 

12 Theodor Fritsch had devoted a whole section of his Antisemiten-Katechismus (1887) 
to ‘Jewish secret societies’. The origins of this notion may be sought in Sir John 
Retcliffe (pseudonym for Hermann Goedsche), Biarritz, 4 vols. (Berlin, 1868-70). 
The chapter entided ‘In the Jewish Cemetery in Prague’ described, amid these 
uncanny surroundings, a secret nocturnal meeting of subversive Jewish agents, 
who discussed their progress in the undermining of European society. The chapter 
was frequendy printed as an independent work and was one of the ingredients in 
the development of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, for which see Norman 
Cohn, Warrant for Genocide (London, 1967), pp. 32-40 and passim. 

13 Philipp Stauff to Heinrich Kraeger, letter dated 30 May 1910, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/512. 

14 Johannes Hering to Philipp Stauff, letter dated 18 January 1911, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/512a. 

1 5 Hermann Pohl, circular dated November 1911, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/5 1 2a. 

16 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 14 (September 1918), 3-4. 

1 7 Hermann Pohl, ‘Aufklarungschrift iiber Veranlassung, Zweck, Ziel, Ausbau der 
Treulogen’, circular dated 12January 1912, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/512a. 

18 Hermann Pohl, ‘Vertrauliche Ordensnachrichten’, circular dated July 1912, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/492; Vertrauliche Ordens-Nachrichten 2 (December 
1912). 

19 Vertrauliche Ordens-Nachrichten 3 (May 1913). 

20 Julius Riittinger, ‘Von 1904 bis 1937’, typescript dated 30 January 1937, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/887; Karl Mathes to Julius Riittinger, letters dated 
12 December 1912 and 19 October 1913; Julius Riittinger to Karl Mathes, letters 
dated 21 and 24 November 1913, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/885. 

21 Arthur Strauss to Julius Riittinger, letter dated 20 May 1914, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/885. 

22 Julius Riittinger, ‘Versuch zur Gewinnung einer Organisation der G. O. Gauloge 
Franken’, typescript dated September 1915, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 

23 ‘Germanen-Botschaft’, undated leaflet, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 

24 ‘Beitritts-Erklarung’, form, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 

25 ‘Anweisung zur Werbearbeit’, undated leaflet, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 
The recommended Ostara numbers were Ostara I, 26 Einjuhrung in die Rassenkunde 
(1908), Ostara I, 27 Beschreibende Rassenkunde (1908), and Ostara I, 65 Rasse und 
Krankheit (1913). It will be recalled that Lanz von Liebenfels had applied these 
racial typologies for the ordering of brothers in the Ordo Novi Templi; see above 
p.llOf. 

26 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 13 (March 1918), 3-4. 

27 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 9 (July 1916), front cover, and in successive numbers. 



249 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

28 The correspondence between Haus Eckloh and the List Society secretariat, dated 
1917-19, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/1244. 

29 See below, p. 151. 

30 Confidential invitation to initiation ceremony, dated 29 December 1913, Bundes- 
archiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. The ‘plastometer’ is illustrated in Robert Burger- 
Villingen, Geheimnis der Menschenform, fifth edition (Berlin, 1940), p. 81. 

31 ‘An die Einfuhrung in den Untergrad’, manuscript dated c. 1912, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/852. This particular lodge was probably located in Magdeburg or 
Breslau. Such a well-appointed lodge was described in these towns in Vertrauliche 
Ordens-Nachrichten 2 (December 1912). 

32 Hermann Pohl to Julius Ruttinger, letter dated 22 November 1914, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/886. 

33 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 10 (Autumn 1917), p. 4f. 

34 Topfer to Julius Ruttinger, letters dated 24 September and 6 December 1915, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/886. 

35 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 9 (July 1916). 

36 Allgemeine Ordens-Nachrichten 10 (Autumn 1917), p. 6; Alfons Steiger, Der neudeutsche 
Heide im Kampf gegen Christen undjuden (Berlin, 1924), p. 175. 

37 Erwin von Heimerdinger, Dr Gensch, and Bernhard Koerner, circular dated 20 
October 1916, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852; Steiger, op. cit., p. 175; Rudolf 
von Sebottendorff, Bevor Hitler kam, second edition (Munich, 1934), pp. 34, 245. 

38 Ernst Bottger to Grand Ducal Court of Weimar, letter dated 6 July 1912, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/510. Accordingto Bottger, th evolkisch lawyer acting 
for Stauff, the Semi-Gotha bore the full title Weimarer historisch-genealogisches 
Taschenbuch des gesamten Adels jehudiiischen XJrsprunges (Weimar, 1912). The edition 
had been confiscated by the court in June 1912. According to a later genealogical 
work by Stauff, Semi-Imperator 1888-1918 (Munich, 1919), the Semi-Alliancen had 
been first published in 1 9 1 2 and the Semi-Gotha ran to subsequent editions in 1 9 1 3 
and 1914. Semi-Imperator 1888-1918 (Munich, 1919), p. 5f. 

39 See the correspondence addressed to Philipp Stauff, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
NS26/510. 

40 Guido von List, ‘Erklarungen und Bemerkungen zu den spiritistischen Sitzungs- 
Protokollen vom 14. / 1 6. und 19. Februar 1913 zu Berlin’, Zeitschriftfur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 59—68. 

4 1 Stauff closed a letter to List, dated 6 September 1913, with the salute ‘Armanengruss 
und Templeisensieg’, which is redolent of both HAO and ONT usage, in Balzli, 
op. cit., p. 1 8 7 f. This hint of New Templarism is given further force by the fact 
that Lanz had corresponded with Stauff as early as 1909, letter of late 1909, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/512. 

42 Photograph of Koerner at the Western Front, in Balzli, op. cit., p. 43; Bernhard 
Koerner to Guido von List, letter dated 12 January 1917, in Balzli, op. cit., 
pp. 174-6. 

43 Eberhard von Brockhusen to Erwin von Heimerdinger, letters dated 27 December 



250 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

1918 and 28 February 1919, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/8S2. 

44 Dietwart (i.e. Philipp Staufi) to Brockhusen, letter dated 2 March 1919; Broclchusen 
to Koerner, letters dated 6 and 26 July 1919; Brockhusen to Heimerdinger, letters 
dated 5 and 15 September 1919, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 

45 Irmin (i.e. Johann Albrecht zu Mecklenburg) to Heimerdinger, letters dated 7 
October and 30 December 1919 and 14 January 1920; funerary notice decorated 
with swastikas, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/852. 

46 ‘Mihilathing’, assembly minutes dated 29 September 1921, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS26/852. 

47 Gotthard Jasper, ‘Aus den Akten der Prozesse gegen die Erzberger-Morder’, 
Vkrteljahresheftejur Zeitgeschichte 10 (1962), 430-53, especially trial documents 5, 6, 9 
and 10; Uwe Lohalm, op. cit., pp. 227-37. 

11. RUDOLF VON SEBOTTENDORFF AND THE THULE SOCIETY 

1 Birth certificate, Rat der Stadt Hoyerswerda. 

2 Rudolf von Sebottendorff, Der Talisman des Rosenkreuzers (Pfullingen, 1925), p. 7. 
The character Erwin Torre represents Sebottendorff in the book. This work is 
hereafter cited as TR. 

3 Ernst Tied e, Astrologisches Lexikon (Leipzig, 1922), p. 279; Sebottendorff, TR, p. 7f. 

4 Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 8-12; Ellic Howe, ‘Rudolph Freiherr von Sebottendorff’, 
unpublished typescript dated 1968, p. 9. 

5 Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 15-20. 

6 ibid., pp. 18-20; Lloyds Record Library, London. 

7 Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 20-2. The Lloyds registry confirms that the S.S. Ems sailed 
from Naples for New York on 9 February 1900, while the S.S. Prinz Regent 
Luitpold arrived in Naples on 14 February. The Norddeutscher Lloyd agent at 
Gibralter, Marseilles or Genoa could have telegraphed to Naples with a request for 
an electrician. Howe, op. cit., p. 10. 

8 Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 22-5. 

9 Tiede, op. cit., p. 279; Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 30-7. 

10 Sebottendorf, TR, pp. 31, 40-2, 46-58. 

11 ibid., pp. 3 If, 34—7. 

12 ibid., pp. 53-7. 

13 ibid., pp. 65-8. 

14 Haupt-Liste fur den In- Reichs- Aus-Lander No. 513699, Stadtarchiv, Munich. 

15 Familienbogen Glauer, dated 19 November 1918, Stadtarchiv, Munich. 

16 ‘Das Portrat eines hakenkreuzlerischen Hochstaplers’, Miinchener Post, 14 March 
1923, p. 7. This account states that the incident occurred in 1909, which must be a 
misprint for 1908. 

17 Rudolf von Sebottendorf, Geschichte der Astrologie, 1 vol. (Leipzig, 1923), I, 5. 



251 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

18 Rudolf von Sebottendorf, ‘Erwin Haller. Ein deutscher Kaufmann in derTiirkei’, 
Munchener Beobachter, 3 1 August 1918-10 May 1919. 

1 9 The book on the Baktashi dervishes finally achieved publication after the war as Die 
Praxis deralten turkischen Freimaurerei (Leipzig, 1 924). Two other works on mysticism 
were written by Sebottendorff at this time. Deutsche Mystik , written in Turkish 
(Stamboul, 1915), cited by Tiede, op. cit., p. 279, and Tauter und Boehme , written in 
Persian (n.p., n.d.), advertised in Sebottendorf, TR, p. 2. Neither of these works has 
been traced. 

20 See above p. 59; Sebottendorf, Die Praxis der alten turkischen Freimaurerei (Leipzig, 
1924), pp. 5ff, 19. 

21 Rudolf von Sebottendorff, Bevor Hitler kam, second edition (Munich, 1934), pp. 
169, 267. This work is hereafter cited as BHK. The Turkish Ministry of the Interior 
confirms that Sebottendorff became a Turkish citizen in 1911. Zeki Kuneralp 
(Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ankara) to John Jardine (British Council, Ankara), 
letter dated 21 February 1969. 

22 Familienbogen Glauer, op. cit. 

23 ‘Reichsfreiherr Siegmund von Sebottendorff von der Rose, k.u.k. Hofkammerer 
und Major a.D.t 21 Oktober 1915 in Wiesbaden’, Wiesbadener Zeitung, 23 October 
1915, p. 6. 

24 Gothaische genealogische Taschenbucher der freiherrlichen Hauser 7 (1857), 700-3; ibid. 38 
(1888), 776f; Genealogische s Taschenbuch der adligen Hauser 12 (1887), 440-2. See 
Appendix B for these genealogies. 

25 Sebottendorf, TR, p. 80 f. 

26 Notes on the tank of Friedrich Gobel are in Technik-Geschichte 23 (1934), 102ff. 

27 Irmgard Uhlig (Kleinzschachwitz) to author, letter dated 20 April 1980. 

28 Familienbogen Glauer, op. cit. Sebottendorff, BHK , pp. 168, 226. Sebottendorff 
vengefully lampooned Alsberg and Heindl as transvestites, Sebottendorf, TR, 

p. 86. 

29 Sebottendorf, 77?, pp. 86-8. 

30 ibid., pp. 90-5. 

31 ibid., pp. 95-8. 

32 ibid., p. 98 f and BHK , p. 40. This new lodge in Berlin is identical with the lodge in 
the Kothener Strasse near Potsdamer Platz, headed by G. W. Freese, see above, 
p. 131. 

33 This biographical account is taken from ‘Zum Gedachtnis an Walter Nauhaus’, 
Deutscher Roland 13 (1920), Sonderdruck, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/I229. 

34 Walter Nauhaus to Guido von List Gesellschaft, letter dated January 1917, in 
Balzli, op. cit., p. 176f. 

35 Sebottendorf, TR, p. 99 and BHK, p. 53. 

36 Sebottendorf, TR, p. 99; Johannes Hering, ‘Beitrage zur Geschichte der Thule- 
Gesellschaft’, typescript dated 21 June 1939, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/865. 



252 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 



37 Sebottendorff, BHK, pp. 57-60. 

38 GLB 1 (1908), p. 13f. 

39 GLB 5 (1910), table I. 

40 ‘Aus der Geschichte der Thule Gesellschaft’, Tktde-Bote 1 (1933), 1-2. 

41 Sebottendorff, BHK , p. 3f. 

42 The ensuing account draws heavily upon Reginald H. Phelps, ‘“Before Hitler 
came”: Thule Society and Germanen Orden Journal of Modem History 25 (1963), 
245-61. 

43 Sebottendorff, BHK, p. 43 f. 

44 ibid., p. 1 94 f. 

45 ibid., pp. 63-70. 

46 The executed Thulists were: Walter Nauhaus, Baron Teuchert, Walter Deicke, 
Friedrich Wilhelm von Seydlitz, Countess Heila von Westarp, Prince Gustav von 
Thurn und Taxis, and Anton Daumelang. ‘Shooting of Hostages . . . Munich 
Savagery was the headline in The Times, 5 May 1919, p. 1. 

47 Sebottendorff, BHK, pp. 62, 237, 240, 248, 264. Eckart, Hitler’s most important 
Munich mentor, lectured in the Thule on 30 May 1919. Johannes Hering, 
‘Beitrage zur Geschichte der Thule-Gesellschaft’, typescript dated 21 June 1939, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/865. 

48 List of members in Sebottendorff, BHK, pp. 225-74. 

49 ibid., p. 74. Details of Karl Harrer on p. 247. 

50 Politische Arbeiter-Zirkel meeting minutes, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/76. 

51 Anton Drexler, ‘LebenslauP, typescript dated 12 March 1935, supplied by Dr 
Reginald Phelps with the permission of Drexler’ s daughter, Frau Anni Widmaier. 
Michael Lotter, ‘Der Beginn meines politischen Denkens’, typescript of lecture 
delivered on 19 October 1935, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/78. 

52 Reginald H. Phelps, ‘Hitler and the Deutsche Arbeiterpartei’, American Historical 
Review 68 (1963), 974—86. 

53 Georg Franz-Willing, Ursprung der Hitlerbewegung, second edition (Preussisch 
Oldendorf, 1974), pp. 115, 123-6. Franz-Willing based this account upon 
interviews and correspondence with Friedrich Krohn, Josef Feuss, Karolina Gahr, 
Erna Hanfstangl and others. 

54 Ernst Tiede to Guido von List, letter dated 25 February 1917, in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 
214-16. 

55 Baron v.d. Launitz, Duke of Gothien to SS-Obersturmbahnfuhrer Theodor 
Christensen, letter dated 13 October 1936, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, EAP 173-b- 
20- 16/ 19a. 

56 SA warning cards on Rudolf von Sebottendorff, dated 29 January and 2 March 
1934, Berlin Document Center, Zehlendorf. 

57 Herbert Rittlinger to Ellic Howe, letter dated 20 June 1968. 



253 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



12. THE HOLY RUNES AND THE EDDA SOCIETY 

1 Arm in Mohler, Die konservative Revolution in Deutschland 1918-1932 (Darmstadt, 
1972), gives a comprehensive survey and bibliography of these various right-wing 
movements after the war. 

2 ‘Lebenslauf Rudolf John Gorsleben’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 3 
(1928), 1 15-16; Rudolfjohn Gorsleben, ‘Fahrt durch Syrien’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- 
und Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 323-8, 368-73. 

3 Rudolf John Gorsleben, ‘Als Rateeeiselh Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 
3 (1928), 1 18-19. 

4 Johannes Hering, ‘Beitrage zur Geschichte der Thule- Gesellschaft’, typescript 
dated 21 June 1939, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/865. 

5 Uwe Lohalm, Volkische Radikalismus (Hamburg, 1970), pp. 260-3, 309f, 420. 
Lohalm notes that the fragmentation of the league favoured the growth of the Nazi 
Party in late 1922 and early 1923. 

6 Rudolfjohn Gorsleben, Hoch-Zeit der Menschheit (Leipzig, 1930), pp. 16-21. 

7 ibid., p. 251. 8 ibid., pp. 251-80. 9 ibid., pp. 294-307. 

10 ibid., pp. 656-77. 11 ibid., p. 109. 12 ibid., p. 328 f. 

13 Bacchos- Dionysos (i.e. Martin Brucher ), Ich befehle! Die befreiende Sendung Deutschlands 
im metaphysischen Geheimnis der deutschen Ursprache (Oberursel, [1920]). 

14 Further members were Otto Dickel, Ernst Hauck, Hans von Joeden, Kurt Prinz 
zur Lippe, Mathilde Merck, Hans Georg Muller, Erich Riedl-Riedenstein, Arnold 
Riige, Tassiso Scheffer, Alfred Schmidt, GrafTassilo Strachwitz, Kaspar Stuhl, Karl 
Weinlander, Arnold Wagemann, Edmund von Wecus, and Richard Anders. Frater 
Georg Nikolaus (ONT), ‘Lexikon der Ariosophie’, undated manuscript, Rudolf 
Mund Archive (Vienna). 

15 ‘Ziele und Satzungen der Edda-Gesellschaft’, Hag All All Hag 10 (1933), Heft 6, 
16-17. It is also recorded that Biilow received a modest grant from Reichsfuhrer- 
SS Heinrich Himmler towards the costs of publishing the periodical. 

16 ‘Gleichschaltung’, Hag All All Hag 10 (1933), Heft 4, 3-5; ‘Die Heimkehr der 
Ostmark ins Reich’, Hagai 15 (1938), Heft 5, 69; ‘Bohmen und Mahren’, Hagai 16 
(1939), Heft 3, 34-5. 

17 Werner von Biilow, ‘Mimirs Quelle’, Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 7, 4-7 and ‘Denkmaler: 
Die Geheimsprache der Denkmaler’, Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 11, 1-3. 

18 Biographical data in Friedrich Bernhard Marby, Sonne und Planeten im Tierkreis 
(Stuttgart, 1975), p. 255 and jacket. 

19 Friedrich Bernhard Marby, ‘Von den Geheimnissen alter Turme und Kirchen’, in 
Der Weg zu den Miittem (Stuttgart, 1957), pp. 65-80. 

20 Siegfried Adolf Kummer, Runen-Magie (Dresden, 1933) and Heilige Runenmacht 
(Hamburg, 1932). 

21 Weisthor (i.e. Wiligut) to Himmler, letter dated 2 May 1934, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, Himmler Nachlass 19. 



254 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

13. HERBERT REICHSTEIN AND ARIOSOPHY 

1 The earliest traceable mention of the word ‘Ariosophy 1 occurs in Ostara I, 82 
(1915), p. 3. 

2 Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels, ‘Grundriss der ariosophischen Geheimlehre’, Zeitschrift 
Jur Menschenkenntnis und Menschenschicksal 1 (1925-6), 4-1 1. 

3 A survey of the periodical literature may be found in Ingeborg Besser, ‘Die Presse 
des neueren Okkultismus in Deutschland von 1875 bis 1933’ (unpublished Ph.D. 
thesis, University of Leipzig, 1945). 

4 Wilhelm Th. H. Wulff, Tierkreis und Hakenkreuz (Giitersloh, 1968). 

5 Ernst Issberner-Haldane, ‘Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 163-4. Although he did not personally meet List, 
Wehrmann corresponded regularly with him before 1919. Frodi Ingolfson 
Wehrmann, ‘Zum Gedenken an Guido von List’s zehnten Sterbetag’, Zeitschrift fur 
Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 4 (1929), 157-8 and Gerhard Kurtz (Stuttgart) to 
author, letter dated 17 March 1979. 

6 Arnulf, ‘Unsere Bildbeilage’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 
58. 

7 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Wie sich ein “Genie” bekannt macht’, Zeitschriftfur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 5 ( 1 930), 1 62-4. The English text was Eleanor Kirk, The Influence 
of the Zodiac upon Human Life (London, 1915). 

8 Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann, Die Tragik der Germanen ( Diisseldorf, 1926) represented 
a typically Listian reinterpretation of historical and cultural materials. His second 
text was Die Sendung der Germanen (Diisseldorf, 1926). 

9 Ernst Issberner-Haldane, Der Chiromant (Bad Oldesloe, 1 925), passim. According to 
this autobiography, Issberner-Haldane again met Mr Hewalt in Berlin after the 
war. At this time Hewalt is portrayed as a mystic with clairvoyant powers, who is 
fighting to safeguard Aryan purity by advising young women vigorously against 
racial mesalliances. He is proposing to withdraw shortly to his private monastery in 
Colombia, ibid., pp. 305-18. Although many episodes in the autobiography may 
owe their inspiration to the post-war theosophical-occult subculture, the encounters 
with such guru figures are recounted in detail, as they might describe authentic 
influences upon Issberner-Haldane before 1914. 

10 ibid., pp. 182-7, 190-8. 11 ibid., pp. 222-33. 

12 Notice in Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung 1 (1926), 167. 

13 The first issue of Die Chiromantie in Reichstein’s periodical appeared in October 
1929. Here Issberner-Haldane described the person of Mr Hewalt and his 
clairvoyant characterological powers, mentioning their two encounters. Ernst 
Issberner-Haldane, ‘Meister-Charakterologen’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschafts- 
reform 4 (1929), 292-4. Issberner-Haldane is first mentioned as a Novice, Fra Yvo 
NNT, in April 1927. Tabularium 43 (January-April 1927), p. 8. An advertisement 
for the ‘Svastika-Heim’ appears in Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 
(1932), 135. One of Ellic Howe’s German contacts told him in the 1960s that 
Issberner-Haldane remarried late in life ‘in order to procreate a Christ Child’. He 
died in 1966. 



255 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

14 Zeitschriflfiir Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 (1932), 163. With the exception of the 
abortive second Ostara series begun by Schmude at Magdeburg in 1 922, Lanz had 
found no outlet for his writings on a regular basis since the conclusion of the first 
Ostara series. 

1 5 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Geleitworte’, Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Menschmschicksal 
1 (1925—6), 1-4; cf. ‘Was wir wollen’, ibid., verso front cover. 

16 ibid., verso front cover. 

17 J. Lanz von Liebenfels, Grundriss der ariosophischen Geheimlehre (Diisseldorf, 1925), 
verso rear cover. 

18 Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung 1 (1926), verso front cover of 
Heft 8/9; cf. announcements in J. Lanz von Liebenfels, Jakob Lorber. Das Grosste 
ariosophische Medium der Neuzeit. III. Teil (Diisseldorf, 1926), p. 18, and Jakob Lorber. 
Das grosste ariosophische Medium der Neuzeit. IV. Teil (Diisseldorf, 1926), verso rear 
cover. 

1 9 Joseph Fischer-Hartinger, ‘ Der Dichter Gregor Bostunitsch. Ein kleines Lebensbild’, 
Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 4 (1929), 333-8. 

20 Norman Cohn had described how this originally Russian forgery of a plan for 
Jewish world-conquest, composed c. 1895, enjoyed renewed popularity among the 
Whites after the October revolution. Norman Cohn, Warrantfor Genocide (London, 
1967), pp. 117-19. 

21 Gregor Schwartz- Bostunitsch, Doktor Steiner— ein Schwindler wie keiner (Munich, 
1930), p. 3; James Webb, The Occult Establishment (LaSalle, 111., 1976), pp. 186, 266f; 
James Webb, The Harmonious Circle (London, 1980), pp. 185-7. 

22 Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), pp. 73, 250-6. 

23 Correspondence between Schwartz-Bostunitsch, Himmler and other senior SS 
officers, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS19/870. Further biographical details in Walter 
Laqueur, Russia and Germany (London, 1965), pp. 122-5. 

24 Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 3(1928), 14-19, 31-2, 45-7, 47-9, 55-7, 
196-9. 

25 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Rudolfjohn Gorsleben f, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschafts- 
reform 5 (1930), 281. 

26 Imaginarium NT, plate 102. 

27 Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann and Herbert Reichstein, ‘Aufruf!’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- 
urtd Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 250-6. 

28 Lanz von Liebenfels appears to have been the first to develop this mantic system. J. 
Lanz von Liebenfels, Meister Amalarich and Meister Archibald, Die ariosophische 
Kabbalistik von Name und Ortlichkeit (Diisseldorf, 1 926). Herbert Reichstein published 
his own Praktisches Lehrbuch der ariosophischen Kabbalistik in serial form in his 
periodical between May 1930 and June 1931. 

29 J. Lanz von Liebenfels, ‘Guido von List’, Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und 
Schicksalsforschung 2 (1927), 74-89; ‘Benito Mussolini’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 3 (1928), 77-94; ‘Ernst Issberner-Haldane’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- 



256 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

und Wissenschaftsreform 3 ( 1 928), 145-50. ‘DieGeschichteder Ariosophie’ appeared 
in the periodical between January 1929 and June 1930. See Appendix C for its 
analysis. 

30 ‘Mitteilungen der “Neuen Kalandsgesellschaft’”, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 4 (1929), 26. 

31 ‘Mitteilungen der “Neuen Kalandsgesellschaft’”, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 4 (1929), 91. 

32 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Charakter- und Schicksalsdeutung aus den Naraen eines 
Menschen’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 4 (1929), 213—19. The 
lecture tour is announced in ‘Mitteilungen der “Neuen Kalandsgesellschaft”’, 
ibid., 296. 

33 ‘Mitteilungen der “Neuen Kalandsgesellschaft”’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 4 (1929), 296. Cf. Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 5 (1930), 
279. 

34 ‘Mitteilungen der “Neuen Kalandsgesellschaft’”, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 4 (1929), 56-7, 229-30. 

35 Notices in Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 5 (1930), pp. 101, 105. 

36 Gerhard Kurtz (Stuttgart) to author, letters dated 17 March 1979 and 23 October 
1980. 

37 ‘Mitteilungen der “Ariosophischen Kulturzentrale” ’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 6 (1931), 199-201, 260. 

38 A brief descripdon of the birthday celebrations appeared in ‘Mitteilungen der 
“Ariosophischen Kulturzentrale” ’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 
(1932), 208. Lanz himself was not present, but sent a letter of gratitude from 
Biberach, ibid., p. 207. 

39 Ingeborg Besser, op. cit. , p. 58. 

40 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Totgeschwiegene Forscher’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 5 (1930), 201-6. 

41 Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 6 (1931), Heft 1 1. 

42 Ostara III, 28 (1931), recto rear cover. The founder of the Hollow Earth Doctrine 
was Cyrus Romulus Reed Teed (1839-1908). Teed claimed to have undergone a 
spiritual illumination in 1870, when he received by revelation the tenets of this 
doctrine, which he called Koreshianity (Koresh is the Hebrew for Cyrus). In 1903 
he established a sectarian community at Estero, Florida. The doctrine was 
introduced to Germany by Peter Bender, who read the sect periodica] The Flaming 
Sword, while a prisoner of war in France. Karl E. Neupert wrote several books on 
the subject. Elmer T. Clark, The Small Sects in America (New York, 1949), pp. 147-50 
and J. Gordon Melton, The Encyclopedia of American Religions (Wilmington, Ind., 
1978), II, 37 f. 

43 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Kabbalistische Horoskope’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissen- 
schaftsreform 5 (1930), 85-9. 

44 Herbert Reichstein, ‘Adolf Hider — ein Werkzeug Gottes’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 7 (1932), 105-6. 



257 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

45 Ernst Lachmann, ‘Deutschlands bevorstehende Schicksalsjahre im Lichte astrolo- 
gischer und historiononrtischer Prophetie’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 
5 (1930), 89-91. ‘1931— das deutsche Wende-und Schicksalsjahr’, Zeitschrift fur 
Geistes - und Wissenschaftsreform 6 (1931), 85-7. T932 — Auftakt zur deutschen 
Revolutionsperiode’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 (1932), 61-3. 

46 Notice in Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 8 (1933), Heft 4. 

47 Interview with Arthur Lorber (Donzdorf), 22 August 1979. 

48 Rudolf Olden, Das Wunderbare oder die Verzauberten (Berlin, 1932). 

49 Sefton Delmer, Weimar Germany (London, 1972), p. 95. 

50 Statements of faith in Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 7 (1932), pp. 157— 
64. 

14. KARL MARIA WILIGUT: THE PRIVATE MAGUS OF HEINRICH HIMMLER 

1 Joachim C. Fest, The Face of the Third Reich (London, 1970), pp. 1 1 1-24; Bradley F. 
Smith, Heinrich Himmler: a Nazi in the making 1900-26 (Stanford, Calif., 1 97 1 ); J osef 
Ackermann, Heinrich Himmler als Ideologe (Gottingen, 1970). 

2 Michael H. Kater, Das 'Ahnenerbe' der SS 1935-1945 (Stuttgart, 1974). 

3 For most information on Wiligut I am indebted to Rudolf J. Mund, Der Rasputin 
Himmlers (Vienna, 1982). Further details were gleaned from the Wiligut- Weisthor 
SS file, Berlin Document Center. 

4 Details of wartime military service in Mund, op. cit., pp. 18-22. 

5 K. M. Wiligut-Weisthor, ‘Lebenslauf’, typescript dated 16 May 1937, Wiligut- 
Weisthor SS file, Berlin Document Center. 

6 According to Frau B., another Mund source, Adolf Hitler is supposed to have 
frequented this group between 1908 and 1913. Mund, op. cit., p. 25. 

7 Theodor Czepl, ‘Gedachtnisprotokoll und Bericht Czepls an den ONT aus dem 
Jahre 192T, in Mund, op. cit., pp. 27-34. 

8 Wiligut’s chronology is described fully in Mund, op. cit., pp. 153-75. The 
centrality of Goslar in his account may derive from his familiarity with Ernst 
Betha, Die Erde und unsere Ahnen (Berlin, 1913), which identified Goslar as the chief 
shrine of ancient Germany. 

9 Wiligut’s account of his family in the medieval period is contained in his own 
‘Lebenslauf’, dated 16 May 1937, Wiligut-Weisthor SS file, Berlin Document 
Center. 

10 A full description of the case and the report of the court in Mund, op. cit., pp. 35- 
51. 

1 1 ‘Uraltes Fatnilien-Siegel des Hauses Wiligut’, Hag All All Hag 10 (1933), Heft 2/3, 
290-3. 

12 Jarl Widar, ‘Gotos Raunen — Runenwissen!’, ‘Runen raunen . . . ’, ‘Die Vierheiten’, 
Hagai 1 1 (1934), Heft 7, 7-15; ‘Die Zahl: Runen raunen, Zahlen reden . . . ’, Hagai 
1 1 (1934), Heft 8, 1-4; ‘Die Schopfungsspirale, das “Weltenei"!’, Hagai 1 1 (1934), 
Heft 9, 4-7. 



258 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 



13 Erik Gustafson, ‘Einleitung’, Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 7, 1-4. 

1 4 Surviving items are a draft of his first Hagai article ‘Go tos Raunen — RunenwissenP 
(July 1934) with a handwritten dedication ‘in Armans-Treue!’; ‘HarumaT (4 May 
1934), a seven- verse mythological poem; ‘Die neun Gebote Gots’ (summer 1935); 
‘DarstellungderMenschheitsentwicklung’ (17 June 1936); ‘O manibatme hum!’, a 
mythological idyll; several letters dated 1935-6; and ‘Ur-Vatar-unsarP ( 1 4 August 
1934), the Irminist paternoster reproduced here: 

Vatar unsar der Du bist der Aithar 
Gibor ist Hagai des Aithars und der Irda! 

Gib uns Deinen Geist und Deine Kraft im Stoffe 
Und forme unsere Skould also gleich dem Werdandi. 

Dein Geist sei unser auch in Urd 

Von Ewigkeit zu Ewigkeit — Om! (:Amen:) 

Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, Nachlass Himmler 19. 

15 Kirchhoff to Weisthor, letter dated 24 June 1934, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
NS21/31. 

16 Weisthor to Himmler, letter dated 17 August 1934, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
NS21/31. 

17 Weisthor to Himmler and Darre, letter dated 2 September 1934, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS21/31. 

18 Gunther Kirchhoff, ‘Rotbart von Kyffhauser’ (1 September 1934) and letter to 
Weisthor dated 27 August 1934, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS21/31. Other 
Kirchhoff items in this folder, NS21/299 and NS19/neu 747. 

19 K. M. Weisthor, ‘Bericht fiber die Dienstreise von SS-Oberffihrer Weisthor nach 
Gaggenau/Baden und Umgebung vom 16.-24. Juni 1936’ and ‘Bericht fiber die 
Auffindung des Irminkreuzes als Ortung im sfidlichen Niedersachsen, also die 5. 
Irminskreuzortung’ (2-24 July 1936) and accompanying letter to Reichsbauern- 
ffihrer R. Walther Darre dated 31 August 1936, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, Nachlass 
Darre ad26. The article describing the ‘turning eye’ ( Draugh ) was ‘Gotos Raunen— 
RunenwissenP, Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 7, 7-14. 

20 Theodor Weigel, ‘Bericht fiber den Stein von Baden-Baden und andere Entdeck- 
ungen des Herrn G. Kirchhoff, Gaggenau’ (15 April 1937), Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS21/31. 

21 Otto Plassmann, ‘Stellungnahme zu dem Schreiben des Gfinther Kirchhoff in 
Gaggenau vom 1 7 . Marz 1 938’ (25 March 1938) and Loffler to Siewers, letter dated 
19 June 1939, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS21/31. 

22 Kirchhoff had first met Tarnhari at the List Society in Berlin during the 1920s. He 
addressed his letter concerning the Raidenstein complex and its associations with 
the Lauterer-Tamhari family to Walther Wust, letter dated 18 July 1938. Evidence 
for Himmler’s positive attitude towards Kirchhoff despite the objections of the 
Ahnenerbe is contained in Brandt to Kirchhoff, letter dated 1 4 J une 1 939, Siewers 
to Schleif, letter dated 2 August 1 939 and Brandt to Wfist, letter dated 26 March 
1941, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS21/31. 



259 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



23 Kirchhoff to Hitler, letter dated 11 November 1944, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
NS 1 9/neu 747. 

24 Karl Hiiser, Wewelsburg 1933- 1945 (Paderborn, 1982) gives a comprehensive 
account of the castle as an SS institution. 

25 Mund, op. cit., p. 115. 

26 Ferdinand Freilingrath (1810-76), ‘Am Birkenbaum’, in Werner Ilberg (ed.), 
Freilingraths Werke in einem Band , third edition (Berlin and Weimar, 1976), pp. 1 45— 
51. The poem achieved its final form in 1850. 

27 Hiiser, op. cit., p. 24f. 

28 Hiiser, op. cit., pp. 33 f, 212. The stick and its use is described in Mund, op. cit., 
p. 127. 

29 Knobelsdorff to Weisthor, letter dated 16 October 1934, Walther Muller SS file, 
Berlin Document Center. 

30 Wiligut used similar runes in his design for a wooden bowl to be used in the 
ceremony of bread and salt at SS weddings. Ulrich Hunger, ‘Die Runenkunde im 
Dritten Reich’ (unpublished Dr. phil. dissertation, University of Gottingen, 1983), 
p. 158. 

31 Hiiser, op. cit., pp. 66 f, 326ff, and J. Ackermann, Heinrich Himmler als Ideologe 
(Gottingen, 1970), p. 72. 

32 Hiiser, op. cit., pp. 294-8. 

33 A description ofWeisthor’s life at Berlin appears in Mund, op. cit., pp. 98-103. 

34 K. M. Weisthor, ‘Zur Herstellung des “Urglaubens”’, undated typescript, 
Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, Nachlass Himmler 19. 

35 Details of Rahn’s career appear in Rahn SS file, Berlin Document Center. 

36 Rahn to Weisthor, letter dated 27 September 1935, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
Nachlass Himmler 19. 

37 Correspondence relating to the SS interest in Evola, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 
NS19/1848. 

38 Mund, op. cit., p. 1 23 f. Wolff to Pancke, letter dated 5 February 1939; Wolff to 
Schmitt, letter dated 22 August 1939, Wiligut-Weisthor SS file, Berlin Document 
Center. 

39 The last period of Wiligut’s life is described in Mund, op. cit., pp. 124-7. 

15. ARIOSOPHY AND ADOLF HITLER 

1 Lanz to Frater Aemilius, letter dated 22 February 1932 in Wilfried Daim ,DerMann, 
der Hitler die Ideen gab (Munich, 1958), p. 12. 

2 A survey of the unreliable and sensational literature relating to Nazi occultism 
appears in Appendix E. 

3 Friedrich Heer, Der Glaube des Adolf Hitler (Vienna, 1968), pp. 15-22. 



260 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

4 Billy F. Price (ed.), Adolf Hitler als Maler und Zeichner. Ein Werkkatalog der Olgemalde, 
Aquarelle, Zeichnungen und Architekturskizzen (Zug, 1983). 

5 Heer, op. cit., pp. 22-33. 

6 Adolf Hider, Mein Kampf (Munich, 1934), pp. 21, 59f. 

7 Daim, op. cit., pp. 14-17, 20-7. 

8 Daim, op. cit., pp. 27-34. 

9 A detailed analysis of the discrepancies between the account of Greiner and that 
provided by reliable sources is in Robert G. L. Waite, The Psychopathic God: Adolf 
Hitler (New York, 1977), pp. 427-32. 

10 Franz Jetzinger, Hitler’s Youth (Westport, Conn., 1976), pp. 136, 182f; Reinhold 
Hanisch, ‘I was Hider’s buddy’, New Republic 98 (1939), 239-42, 270-2, 297-300. 

11 Hermann Rauschning, Hitler Speaks (London, 1939), p. 227. 

12 Daim, op. cit., pp. 16, 162f. 

13 Reginald H. Phelps, ‘Die Hitler-Bibliothek’, Deutsche Rundschau 80 (1954), 923-31. 

14 Inge Kunz, ‘Herrenmenschentum, Neugermanen und Okkultismus. Eine sozio- 
logische Bearbeitung der Schriften von Guido List’ (unpublished Dr. phil. thesis, 
University of Vienna, 1961), pp. 4-6. Schmidt-Falk must have been referring to 
Friedrich Oskar Wannieck, who died on 6 July 1912. 

15 Phelps, op. cit., p. 925. 

16 August Kubizek, Young Hitler (Maidstone, 1973), p. 1 lOf. 

17 Kunz, op. cit., pp. 4, 9, 1 1. 

18 Kubizek, op. cit., p. 135. 

19 Price, op. cit., pp. 1 65-=-l 83. There are in this volume numerous illustrations of 
Hider paintings which were forged by Konrad Kujau, also notorious as the author 
of the Stem Hider Diaries. Many of the dubious items are located in the D1 
collection of Fritz Suefel at Waiblingen. 

20 Edouard Calic, Ohne Maske. Hitler-Breiting Geheimgesprache 1931 (Frankfurt, 
1968), p. 60. 

21 Johannes Hering, ‘Beitrage zur Geschichte der Thule-Gesellschaft’, typescript 
dated 21 June 1939, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, NS26/865. 

22 Adolf Hider, Mein Kampf (Munich, 1934), pp. 3 95 8 . 

23 The importance of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion for the growth of this post- 
war demonology in Germany is fully documented in Norman Cohn, Warrant for 
Genocide (London, 1967), pp. 126—215. 

24 James M. Rhodes, The Hitler Movement (Stanford, 1980) draws on the writings and 
speeches of Hider, Goebbels, Rosenberg, Strasser, and other Nazi leaders to 
highlight their apocalyptic consciousness. 

25 These grandiose projects are documented in the following works: Albert Speer, 
Inside the Third Reich (London, 1970) and The Spandau Diaries (London, 1976); Karl 



261 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 

Hiiser, Wewelsburg 19JJ-1945 (Paderborn, 1982); Anton Joachimsthaler, Die 
Breitsfiurbahn Hitlers (Freiburg, 1981); Felix Kersten, The Kersten Memoirs 1940-1945 
(London, 1956); Josef Ackermann, Heinrich Himmler als Ideologe (Gottingen, 1970); 
Clarissa Henry and Marc Hillel, Children of the SS (London, 1975). 

APPENDIX C: THE HISTORY OF ARIOSOPHY 

1 Lanz took the idea of a proto- Aryan settled continent of Adantis from two post-war 
volkisch mythologists: Karl Georg Zschaetzsch , Atlantis, die Urheimat der Arier (Berlin, 
1922) and Hermann Wieland, Atlantis, Edda und Bibel (Weissenburg, 1925). 

2 J. Lanz v. Liebenfels, ‘Die Geschichte der Ariosophie’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 4 (1929), 34 f. 

3 ibid., 35. 4 ibid., 100. 

5 J. Lanz v. Liebenfels, Die unterschlagene esoterische Lehre des Ulftlas (Szt. Balazs, 1 930); 
Ulftlas und das Schliisselworterbuch zur Esoterik des Altertums und Mittelalters , 4 vols. (Szt. 
Balazs, 1930). 

6 J. Lanz v. Liebenfels, Das Leben St. Benedikts von Nursia (Szt. Balazs, 1930); Der Tod St. 
Benedikl von Nursia und seine Ordensregel, I. Teil (Szt. Balazs, 1 930); Die Ordensregel St. 
Benedikts von Nursia, II. Teil (Szt. Balazs, 1 930); Die Priesterschaft Benedikts van Nursia, I. 
Teil: Ursprunge und Vorlaufer (Szt. Balazs, 1930); Die Priesterschaft Benedikts von Nursia, 
II. Teil: Die Einwirkung auf die Menschheitsentuiicklung (Szt. Balazs, 1 930). 

7 J. Lanz v. Liebenfels, Die Priesterschaft St. Bernhards von Clairvaux, 2 vols. (Szt. Balazs, 
1930). 

8 J. Lanz v. Liebenfels, ‘Die Geschichte der Ariosophie’, Zeitschrift fur Geistes- und 
Wissenschaftsreform 4 (1929), 179. 

9 ibid., 237-40. 

10 A full list of ariosophical mystics from antiquity up until the present is given inj. 
Lanz v. Liebenfels, Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch-christliche Mystik. VI. Teil: Praxis, 
Geschichte und Literatur der Mystik (n.p., 1934), pp. 4-16. 

APPENDIX E: THE MODERN MYTHOLOGY OF NAZI OCCULTISM 

1 A sample of such works might include the following: Nazi-hunting in the German 
expatriate communities of South America, including the search for the allegedly 
fugitive Martin Bormann, are represented by Ladislas Farago, Aftermath. Martin 
Bormann and the Fourth Reich (London, 1974), and Erich Erdstein with Barbara Bean, 
Inside the Fourth Reich (London, 1978). Robert Ludlum, The Holcroft Covenant (St 
Albans, 1978) describes a Nazi revival against the background of high finance. 
Michael Sinclair, A Long Time Sleeping (London, 1975) tells how Hitler survived until 
1 967 in the United States with contacts among the old guard in high political office 
throughout the world. W. Mattern, UFOs. Letzte Geheimwaffe des Dritten Reiches 
(Toronto, n.d.) suggests that the flying saucers are directed by a clique of Nazi 
survivors bent upon the successful resumption of world conquest. 

2 Right-wing political groups of explicit Nazi inspiration in Great Britain and the 
United States are described in Angelo del Boca and Mario Giovana, Fascism Today 
(London, 1970), pp. 261-70, 323-66. Nazi chants and salutes are used in the 
Church of Satan, a sect devoted to devil-worship and unbridled sensual 



262 




NOTES AND REFERENCES 

gratification, which was founded in 1 966 in San Francisco. Anton Szandor LaVey, 
The Satanic Rituals (New York, 1972). 

3 Helena Petrovna Blavatsky, The Secret Doctrine, second edition, 2 vols. (London, 
1888), I, xxiii-xxv. 

4 Joseph Saint-Yves d’Alveydre, La Mission de I’lnde en Europe (Paris, 1910), p. 27. 

5 Ferdynand Ossendowski, Beasts, Men and Gods (London, 1923), pp. 299-316. 

6 Louis Jacolliot, Les fils de Dieu (Paris, 1873) referred to the tin/ in connection with the 
magical practices of the Jainists in India. For Blavatsky’s debt to Jacolliot, see 
Coleman, op. cit., pp. 357-366. 

7 Willy Ley, ‘Pseudoscience in Naziland’, Astounding Science Fiction 39 (1947), 90-8. 

8 Louis Pauwels and Jacques Bergier, The Morning of the Magicians (St Albans, 1971), 
p. 1 46 f. 

9 ibid., p. 148n. 

10 For an objective account of Eckart’s influence on Hitler, see John Toland, Adolf 
Hitler (New York, 1976), pp. 99-101 and Robert G. L. Waite, The Psychopathic God: 
Adolf Hitler (New York, 1977), pp. 116-18. 

1 1 The limited extent of Hider’s contact with Karl Haushofer may be deduced from 
Hans- Adolf Jacobsen, Karl Haushofer. Leben und Werk Bd. 1, Schriften des Bundes- 
archivs 24/1 (Boppard, 1979), pp. 224-258. 

12 Pauwels and Bergier, op. cit., p. 193. 

13 ibid., pp. 195-8. 

14 The presence of Gurdjieff himself in Tibet is a matter of contention and 
mystification. James Webb, The Harmonious Circle (London, 1980), pp. 48-74. 

15 Dietrich Bronder, Bevor Hitler kam (Hanover, 1964), pp. 239-44. 

16 Walter Johannes Stein, Weltgeschichte im Lichte des heiligen Gral, 1 vol. (Stuttgart, 
1928), I, 6-8, 381-94. 

17 Trevor Ravenscroft, The Spear of Destiny (London, 1972), pp. 67-88. The repatriation 
of the Habsburg imperial regalia to Germany formed the subject of Ostara 1, 6 (July 
1906). Hitler actually had the regalia transferred to Nuremberg after 1938. 

18 ibid., pp. 167-70, 186. 

19 ibid., p. 230. 20 ibid., pp. 103-5. 

21 ibid., p. 59. 22 ibid., p. 76. 

23 The conjuring of a ‘Moon Child’ is redolent of myths surrounding Aleister 
Crowley. Somerset W. Maugham wrote a caustic satire about Crowley, in which a 
certain ‘Oliver Haddo’ engaged in evil alchemical experiments at his Staffordshire 
mansion to create a homunculus with the life- force of his poor wife. Somerset W. 
Maugham, The Magician (London, 1908). Crowley also wrote a novel about the 
magical creation of familiar spirits and discarnate entities. Aleister Crowley, 
Moonchild (London, 1929). The fictional status of both Ernst Pretzsche and his 



263 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



bookshop is discussed in Christoph Lindenberg, ‘The Spear of Destiny [review]’, 
Die Drei, December 1974, 631-5. 

24 Jean-Claude Frere, Nazisme et societes secretes (Paris, 1974), pp. 142-4. 

25 Franz Trefflinger, ‘Beitrage zu einer Biographie des Abtes Theoderich Hagn von 
Lambach (1816-1872)’ (unpublished Ph.D. thesis, University of Vienna, 1967). 

26 Franz Jetzinger, Hitler’s Youth (Westport, Conn., 1976), p. 58 f. 



264 




Bibliography 



A. PRIMARY SOURCES 
I. Theosophical and Astrological Publications 



(a) Periodicals 

Astrologische Rundschau. Monthly. Theosophical 
Publishing House: Leipzig, October 1910- 
36. Edited by Karl B randier- Pracht, 1 910— 
14, Ernst Tiede, 1914—20, Rudolf von 
Sebottendorff, 1920-4. 

Die Gnosis. Fortnightly. W. Opetz: Vienna, 
1903-4. Edited by Philipp Maschlufsky. 

Isis. Monthly. E. Fiedler: Leipzig, 1908-9. 
Edited by Casimir Zawadzki. Continued 
as Theosophie. 

Lotusbliithen . Monthly. W. Friedrich: Leipzig, 
1892-1900. Edited by Franz Hartmann. 

Metaphysische Rundschau. Monthly. Paul Zill- 
mann: Gross-Lichterfelde, 1896-7. Edited 
by Paul Zillmann. Continued as Neue 
Metaphysische Rundschau. 

Neue Lotusbluten. Fortnighdy. Jaeger’sche 
Buchhandlung: Leipzig, 1908-15. Edited 
by Franz Hartmann, 1908-12, Harald 
Aijuna Gravel! van Jostenoode, 1913, 
Reich- Gutzeit, 1914-15. 

Neue Metaphysische Rundschau. Monthly. Paul 
Zillmann: Gross-Lichterfelde, 1898-1918. 
Edited by Paul Zillmann. 

Prana. Monthly. Theosophical Publishing 
House: Leipzig, October 1909-September 
1919. Edited by Karl Brandler-Pracht, 
1 909-1 4, Johannes Walter, 1 9 1 5, Johannes 
Balzli, 1916-19. 

Die Sphinx. Monthly. Theodor Grieben: Leipzig, 
1886, Theodor Hoffmann: Gera, 1887-8, 
C. A. Schwetschke: Brunswick, 1888-95. 
Edited by Wilhelm Hubbe-Schleiden. 

Theosophie. Monthly. Theosophical Publishing 



House: Leipzig, April 1910-1 930s. Edited 
by members of the Theosophical Society, 
1910, Hugo Voll rath, 1911-20. 
Theosophisches Leben. Monthly. Paul Raatz: 
Berlin, 1898-1920. Edited by Paul Raatz. 
Der theosophische Wegweiser. Monthly. Verlagdes 
theosophischen Wegweisers: Leipzig, 

October 1898-September 1907. Edited by 
Arthur Weber. 

Der Wanderer. Monthly. Theosophical Publish- 
ing House: Leipzig, July 1906-June 1908. 
Edited by Arthur Weber. 

Zentralblatt fur Okkultismus. Monthly. Max Alt- 
mann: Leipzig, July 1907-33. Edited by 
D. Georgiewitz-Weitzer. 

(b) Book-Series 

Astrologische Bibliothek. 18 vols. Theo- 
sophical Publishing House: Leipzig, 
1910-23. 

1 Brandler-Pracht, Kleines astrologisches 

Lehrbuch (1910). 

2 Brandler-Pracht, Astrologische 

Aphorismen (1910). 
Brandler-Pracht, Hauser-Tabeilen von 
40°-50° geographischer Breite 
(1910). 

4 Brandler-Pracht, Das Solarhoroskop— 

Jahreshoroskop (1910). 

5 Brandler-Pracht, Die Lehre von den 

astrologischen Direktionen (1910) 

6 Brandler-Pracht, Die Stunden-Astro- 

logie (1912). 

7 Poliner, Mundan-Astrologie (1914). 



265 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



8 Pollner, Schicksal und Sterne (1914). 

9 Feerhow, Die medizinische Astrologie 

(1914). 

10 Morbitz, Berechnungstabellen fur die 

astrologische Praxis (1919). 

1 1 Pollner, Tafeln fur die schiefe Aufsteig- 

ung fur die Polhohe von 1° bis 60° 
[1922]. 

1 2 Heindel, Vereinfachte wissenschaftliche 

Astrologie (1920). 

1 3 Heindel, Die Botschaft der Sterne (1921). 

14 Tiede, Astrologisches Lexikon [1922]. 

15 Sebottendorff, Geschichte der Astro- 

logie. Bd. 1 (1923). 

16 Sebottendorff, Stemtafeln (Ephemeri- 

den) von 1838-1922 (1922). 

17 Sebottendorff, Praktischer Lehrgang 

zur Horoskopie (1922). 

1 8 Sebottendorff, Sonnen- und Mondorte 

[1923]. 

second edition: 

1 Pollner, Astrologisches Lehrbuch 

(1920). 

2 Feerhow, Astrologische Dienstregeln 

(1920). 

4 Sebottendorff, Die Hilfshoroskopie 

[1921]. 

5 Grimm, Die Lehre von den astrolo- 

ischen Direktionen (1920). 

6 Sebottendorff, Stunden- und Frage- 

Horoskopie (1921). 



Hartmann, Die Religionslehre der 
Buddhisten (1898). 

2 Sankaracharya, Das Palladium der 
Weisheit (Viveka Chudamani) ( 1 898). 
3/4 Hartmann, Die Geheimlehre der 
christlichen Religion nach den Er- 
klarungen von Meister Eckhart 
(1898). 

5 Leiningen-Billigheim, Was ist MvstikP 
(1898). 

7/8 Besant, Die sieben Prinzipien oder 
Grundteile des Menschen (1899). 
7/8 Besant, Reinkarnation oder Wieder- 
verkorperungslehre (1900). 

9 Hartmann, Tao-Teh- King (Der Weg, 

die Wahrheit und das Licht) (1900). 

10 Leadbeater, Unsere unsichtbaren 

Heifer (1900). 

11/12 Hartmann, Die Erkenntnislehre der 
Bhagavad Gita im Lichte der 
Geheimlehre betrachtet (1900). 



Geheime Wissenschaften. 21 vols. H. Bars- 
dorf: Berlin, 1913-20. 

1 Enth. die Johann Valentin Andrea 

zugeschriebenen vier Hauptschriften 
der alten Rosenkreuzer. 1, Chy- 
mische Hochzeit: Christian Rosen- 
creutz. anno. 1459. Nach der zu 
Strassburg bei Lazari Zetzners seel. 
Erben im J. 1616 erschienenen 
Ausgabe originalgetreu neugedruckt 
2-4. Allgemeine und General Re- 
formation der gantzen weiten Welt. 
Beneben der Fama und Confession 
fraternitatis des loblichen Ordens 
des Rosen Creutzes, an alle Gelehrte, 
und Haupter Europae geschrieben. 
Mit Einleitung von Ferdinand 
Maack (1913). 

2 Die Elemente der Kabbalah. 1. Teil. 

Theoretische Kabbalah. Das Buch 
Jezirah. Sohar-Auszuge. Erl. von 
Erich Bischoff (1913). 

3 Die Elemente der Kabbalah. 2. Teil. 

Praktische Kabbalah. Magische 
Wissenschaft, magische Kunste 
(1914). 

4 Elias artista redivivus, oder Das Buch 

von Salz und Raum. Hrsg. von 
Ferdinand Maack (1913). 

5-8 Hermetisches A.B.C., derer achten 
Weisen alter und neuer Zeiten von 
Stein der Weisen. Aus gegeben von 
einem wahren Gott- und Menschen- 
freunde. 4. Teile. Berlin 1778, 1779 
bey Christian Ulrich Ringmacher. 
Originalgetreuer Facs. -Ausgabe 
(1915). 

9 Des Hermes Trismegist’s wahrer alter 
Naturweg zur Bereitung dergrossen 
Universaltinctur. (Wahrer alter 
Naturweg oder: Geheimnis wie die 
grosse Universaltinctur ohne Glaser, 
auf Menschen und Metalle zu 
bereiten). Hrsg. von einem achten 
Freimaurer I.C.H. Originalgetreuer 
Facs. -Ausgabe (1915). 

10-14 Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa’s von 
Nettesheim, Magische Werke 
sammt den geheimnisvollen Schrif- 
ten des Petrus van Abano, Pictorius 
von Vill ingen, Gerhard von Cre- 
mona, AbtTritheim vonSpanheim, 
dem Buche Arbatel, der sogenannten 
Hi. Geist-Kunstund verschiedenen 
anderen. 5 vols (1916). 



266 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



1 5 Ernst Tiede, Ur-Arische Gotteserkennt- 

nis. Ihr neues Erwachen im Sonnen- 
recht und die Erschliessung der 
kleinen und grossen Mysterien 
(1917). 

16 Seraphinische Blumen-Gartlein. Aus- 

lese aus den mystisch-religiosen 
Schriften Jakob Bohmes. Nach der 
Amsterdam Orig. -Ausgabe von 
1700 neu hrsg. von Antonius van 
der Linden (1918). 

17 Franz Freudenberg, Paracelsus und 

Fludd. Die beiden grossen Okkult- 
isten und Arzte der 15. und 16. 
Jahrhunderte (1918). 

18 Erich Bischoff, Das Jenseits der Seele. 

Zur Mystik des Lebens nach dem 
Tode <Unsterblichkeit, ewige 
Wiederkunft, Auferstehung, Seelen- 
wanderung> (1919). 

19 Franz Freudenberg, Der Blick in die 

Zukunft. Die Wahrsagerkunst im 
Spiegel der Zeit und der Volker- 
geschichte (1919). 

20 Erich Bischoff, Die Mystik und Magie 

der Zahlen. <Arithmetische Kab- 
balah>. Zahlenmystik des Himmels, 
der Musik, der Natur, des mensch- 
lichen Lebenslaufes, der Geschichte 
und des Geisteslebens. Die Magie 
der Zahlen und Zahlenfiguren, ihre 
Bedeutung fur Verstandnis und 
Berechnungen von Vergangenheit 
und Zukunft. Berechnungen der 
Geburtsplaneten und wichtigen 
Lebensdaten. Systematische Sym- 
bolik der Zahlen von 1-4,320,000 
(1920). 

2 1 Compass der Weisen. [Verfasser: Adam 

Michael Birkholzj. Hrsg. von 
Ketmia Vere (i.e.) Baron Proek. 
Berlin und Leipzig bey Christian 
Ulrich Ringmacher, 1779 (1920). 

Geheimwissenschaftliche Vortrdge. 27 vols. 
Theosophische Centralbuchh: 
Leipzig, 1902-7. 

1 Rudolf, Keine Religion ist hoher als die 

Wahrheit (1902). 

2 Rudolf, Die ‘Theosophische Gesell- 

schaft’ (1902). 

3 Rudolf, Das Christentum, vom Stand- 

punkte der occulten Philosophie 
aus betrachtet (1902). 



4 Rudolf, Warum vertritt die ‘Theoso- 

phische Gesellschaft’ das Prinzip 
der Toleranz? (1902). 

5 Rudolf, Karma, das Gesetz der Wieder- 

vergeitung und Harmonie im Wel- 
tall (1904). 

6 Rudolf, Der verlorene Sohn (Ev. Lucae 

15, 11-32) (1904). 

7 Rudolf, Die Lebendigen und dieToten 

(1904). 

15 Hartmann, Der wissenschafdiche 

Beweis der Unsterblichkeit und die 
occulte Philosophie (1905). 

16 Bohme, Die ‘Internationale theoso- 

phische Verbriiderung’ und die 
‘Theosophischen Gesellschaften’ 
(1905). 

17 Rudolf, Der Patriotismus und die 

theosophische Verbriiderung der 
Menschheit (1905). 

18-20 Hartmann, Uber den Verkehr mit der 
Geisterwelt (1905). 

21-23 Bohme, Das Gedankenleben und seine 
Beherrschung (1905). 

24 Rudolf, Die Ehe und die Geheimlehre 

(1905). 

25 Rudolph, Kunst und Religion (1907). 

26 Hartmann, Chemie und Alchemie 

(1907). 

27 Weber, Eine Betrachtung eiYiiger Lehren 

der Upanishaden (1907). 

Geisteswissenschaftliche Vortrdge. 25 vols. 
Theosophical Publishing House: 
Leipzig, 1909, 1914. 

1 Besant, Die Aufgabe der theosophischen 

Gesellschaft ( 1 909). 

2 Besant and Leadbeater, Der Ather im 

Weltenraume ( 1 909). 

3 Besant, Der Zeitgeist (1909). 

4 Leadbeater, Unsichtbare Heifer ( 1 909). 

5 Besant, Der Vegetarismus im Lichte 

der Theosophie (1909). 

6 Scott- Elliott, Das Gesetz des Opfers 

(1909). 

7/8 Chatterji, Der Pfad der Vervollkomm- 
nung. Das gottliche Schauen der 
Weisen Indiens (1909). 

9 Besant, Die Notwendigkeit der Wieder- 
verkorperung (1909). 

10 Besant, Die Aufgabe der Politik im 

Leben der Volker (1909). 

1 1 Besant, Das Geheimnis der Entwicklung 

(1909). 

12 Besant, Die Hitter der Menschheit 

(1909). 



267 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



13 Besant, Hatha-Yoga -und Raga-Yoga 

oder geistige Entwicklung nach 
altindischer Methode (1909). 

1 4 Besant, Das Suchen nach Gluck ( 1 909). 

15 Bohme, Was ist Toleranz? (1909). 
16/17 Blavatsky, Diejiingerschaft. Ausspriiche 

(1909). 

18 Leadbeater, Naturgeister (1909). 

19 Besant, Geistige Dunkelheit (1909). 

20 Besant, Die Gesetze des hoheren 

Lebens (1909). 

21 Besant, Betrachtungen iiber Christus 

(1914). 

22 Schneider, Theosophische Gesellschaft 

(1914). 

23 Feerhow, Die geistige Hierarchie (1914). 

24 Besant, Die Mysterien ( 1 9 1 4). 

25 Gravell, Die Grunderfordnisse zum 

Studium der Geisterwissenschaft 
(1914). 

Theosophische Flugschriften. 9 vols. Theo- 
sophical Publishing House: Leipzig, 
1907. 

1 Bohme, Was ist Theosophie? (1907). 

2 Hartmann, Die theosophische Ver- 

briiderung der Menschheit (1907). 

3 Hartmann, Philotheosophie (1907). 

4 Hartmann, Der Socialismus vom Stand- 

punkte der occuken Wissenschaft 
aus betrachtet (1907). 

5 Rudolph, Gibt es eine Weiterbildung 

der Religion? (1907). 

6 Bohme, Der Weg (1907). 

7 Bohme, Gott, Welt undMensch( 1907). 

8 Blavatsky, Die Urgeschichte der Mensch- 

heit (Runden und Rassen) (1907). 

9 Rudolph, Unser Sonnensystem ( 1 907). 

Theosophische Schriften. 30 vols. C. A. 
Schwetschke: Brunswick, 1894-6. 

1 Besant, Die Sphinx der Theosophie 

(1894). 

2 Hubbe-Schleiden, Karma (1894). 

3 Chakravarta, Der Weltberuf der Theo- 

sophischen Gesellschaft (1894). 

4 Hubbe-Schleiden, Karma im Christen- 

tum (1894). 

5 Hubbe-Schleiden, Die Lehre der 

Wiederverkorperung im Christen- 
tum (1894). 

6 Goring, Dr Franz Hartmann; Hart- 

mann, Wiederverkorperung (1894). 

7 Ewald, Theosophie gegen Anarchie 

(1894). 

8 Krecke, Wie die Theosophie dem sitt- 



lichen und sozialen Elend ent- 
gegenwirkt (1894). 

9 Besant, Theosophie und soziale Fragen 
(1894). 

10 Hubbe-Schleiden, Die geistige und 

geschichtliche Bedeutung der 
theosophischen Bewegung (1894). 

1 1 Mead, Yoga, die Wissenschaft der Seele 

(1895). 

12/13 Hartmann, Mystikund Weltende(1895). 
14/15 Besant, Interview iiber Theosophie 
(1895). 

16/17 Koeber, Der Gedanke der Wieder- 
verkorperung in Hellas und Rom 

(1895). 

18 Hartmann, Gedanken iiber die Theo- 

sophie und die ‘Theosophische 
Gesellschaft’ (1895). 

19 Friedrichsort, Hiibbe-Schleidens 

Weltanschauung (1895). 

20 Hartmann, Die Feuerbestattung (1895). 

21 Tolstoy, Religion und Moral (1895). 
22/23 Besant, Symbolik (1895). 

24 Krecke, Weltverbesserung (1895). 

25 Diestel, Karma; Anderson, Bestimm- 

ung des Geschlechtes bei der 
Wiederverkorperung (1895). 

26 Diestel, Buddhismus und Christentum 

(1895). 

27 Goring, Erziehung zu religiosem Leben 

(1895). 

28 Wolf, Mensch, Tier und Vivisektion 

(1895). 

29/30 Besant, Die Mahatmas, ihre thatsach- 
liche Existenz und das von ihnen 
verkorperte Ideal (1896). 

Theosophische Strahlen. 18 vols. Paul 
Raatz: Berlin, 1901r-4. 

1 Raatz, Die Notwendigkeit der Rein- 

karnation (1901). 

2 Corvinus, Die theosophische Lehre 

der Kreislaufe (Cyclen) (1901). 

3/4 Raatz, Die siebenfache Konstitution 
des Menschen (1901). 

5 Raatz, Allgemeine Bruderschaft (1901). 

6 John, Der wahre Wert des Lebens 

(1901). 

7/8 Judge, Das Entwickeln der Konzen- 
tration. -Okkulte Krafte und deren 
Anneigung (1902). 

9 Raatz, Die Karma- Lehre und ihre 
praktische Anwendung (1902). 

10 Vogel, Kampf der Wahrheit mit der 

Luge. Eine Allegorie (1902). 

1 1 Boldt, Karma, oder Was wir saen, das 

ernten wir (1902). 



268 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



12 Raatz, Die theosophische Bedeutung 

der Geburt Jesu (1902). 

13 Green, Theosophie und Naturwissen- 

schaft oder die Grundlage der 
esoterischen Philosophic (1903). 

14 ‘Meister der Weisheit’, Einige Worte 

furs tagliche Leben (1904). 

15/16 Judge, Aus H. P. Blavatskys Leben 
(1904). 

17/18 Raatz, Die esoterische Erklarung des 
Gleichnisses vom verlorenen Sohn 
(1904). 

(c) Books 

Annie Besant 

Der Stammbaum der Menschen ( Leipzig, 1907). 

Helena Petrovna Blavatsky 

Isis Unveiled , 2 vols. (London, 1877). 

The Secret Doctrine, second edirion, 2 vols. 
(London, 1888). 

Die Geheimlehre, translated by Robert Froebe, 
2 vols. (Leipzig, 1897-1901). 

Edwin Bohme 

Giebt es ein Weiterleben und Wiedersehen nach 
dem Tode? (Leipzig, 1900). 

Diet 'Internationale theosophische Verbriiderung ’ 
und die ‘Theosophischen Gesellschaften’ 
(Leipzig, 1905). 

Das Gedankenleben und seine Beherrschung 
(Leipzig, 1905). 

Gott, Welt und Mensch (Leipzig, 1907). 

Was ist Theosophie ? (Leipzig, 1907). 

Karl Brandler-Pracht 

Mathematisch-instruktives Lehrbuch der Astrologie 
(Leipzig, 1905). 

Lehrbuch der Entwicklung der okkulten Krdfte im 
Menschen (Leipzig, 1907). 

Kleines astrologisches Lehrbuch (Leipzig, 1910). 

Astrologische Aphorismen (Leipzig, 1910). 

Hauser-Tabellen von 40°-56° geographischer 
Breite (Leipzig, 1910). 

Das Solarhoroskop—Jahreshoroskop (Leipzig, 
1910). 

Die Lehre von den astrologischen Direktionen 
(Leipzig, 1910). 

Die Tatuias und ihre Bedeutung fur das praktische 
Leben (Leipzig, 1911). 

Unterrichtsbriefe zur Entwickelung der WiUen- 
kraft , 10 vols. (Leipzig, 1911-13). 

Die Neugedankenlehre (Leipzig, 1912). 

Die Stunden- Astrologie (Leipzig, 1912). 

Der Heilmagnetismus von okkidtem Standpunkt 
(Berlin-Charlottenburg, 1914). 

Wladimir von EglofFstein 

Die Periodicitdt in der Kirchengeschichte (Alten- 
burg, 1911). 



Hugo Goring 

Dr Franz Hartmann, ein Vorkampfer der Theo- 
sophie (Brunswick, 1894). 

Harald Arjuna Graved van Jostenoode 

Christlich-Germanisch, third edition (Leipzig, 
1899). 

Der neue Kurs im Unterrichtswesen, second 
edition of ‘Klassisch v. volkstumlich?’ 
(Leipzig, 1899). 

Arische Gesinnung und deutsches Schildesamt 
(Leipzig, 1900). 

Die Volkspoesie im Unterricht (Leipzig, 1901). 
Die 10 Gebote der Germanen (Brunswick, 
1901). 

Aryavarta (Vienna, 1905). 

Die neue Bildung (Stuttgart, 1905). 

Die Reichskleinodien zuriick nach dem Reich!, 
Ostara I, 6 (Rodaun, 1906). 

Das Ariertum und seine Feinde, Ostara, I, 25 
(Rodaun, 1908). 

Die arische Bewegung (Leipzig, 1909). 
Arthur Grobe-Wutischsky 

Impfung und Impfgesetz (Berlin-Charlotten- 
burg, 1914). 

Der Weltkrieg 1914 in der Prophetic (Leipzig, 
1915). 

Franz Hartmann 

Report of Observations made during a nine 
months’ stay at the Headquarters of the Theo- 
sophical Society at Adyar (Madras), India 
(Madras, 1884). 

White and Black Magic (Boston and Madras, 
1885). 

An Adventure among the Rosicrucians (Boston, 
1887). 

The Life of Philippus Theophrastus Bombast 
(London, 1887). 

Cosmology (Boston, 1888). 

The Life of Jehoshua, the prophet of Nazareth 
(London, 1888). 

The Principles of Astrological Geomancy (London, 

1889) . 

In the Pronaos of the Temple of Wisdom (London, 

1890) . 

The Talking Image of Urur (New York, [1890]) 
The Life and Doctrines of Jacob Boehme (London, 

1891) . 

Die Bhagavad Gita, translated by Dr F. 

Hartmann (Leipzig, 1892). 

Uber eine neue Heilmethode zur Heilung von 
Lungentuberkulose (Leipzig, i 893). 

Die weisse und schwarze Mage (Leipzig, [ 1 894]) 
Selbsterkenntnis und Wiederverkorperung 
(Brunswick, 1894). 



269 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Mystik und Weltende (Brunswick, 1895). 
Gedanken uber die Theosophie und die ‘Theoso- 
phische GeseUschaft’ (Brunswick, 1895). 
Die Feuerbestattung (Brunswick, 1895). 
Among the Gnomes. An occult tale of adventure in 
the Untersberg (London, 1 895). 

Atma Bodha , translated by F. Hartmann 
(Leipzig, [1895]). 

Tattwa Bodha , translated by F. Hartmann 
(Leipzig, [1895])- 

Die Geheimlehre in der christlichen Religion nach 
den Erfdarungen von Meister Eckart (Leipzig, 

1895) . 

Unterden Gnomenim Untersberg. Eine sonderbare 
Geschichte (Leipzig, (1896]). 

Lebendig begraben. Eine Untersuchung der Natur 
und Ursachen des Scheintodes (Leipzig, 

1896) . 

Karma, oder Wissen, Wirken und Werden 
(Leipzig, [1897]). 

Jehoshua der Prophet von Nazareth (Leipzig, 
[1897]). 

Die Erkenntnislehre der Bhagavad Gita, im 
Lichte der Geheimlehre betrachtet (Leipzig, 

1897) . 

Theosophie in China, Betrachtungen uber den 
Tao-Teh-King (Leipzig, 1897). 

Die Religionslehre der Buddhisten (Leipzig, 

1898) . 

Die Reinkamation oder Wiederverkorperung 
(Leipzig, 1898). 

Grundnss der Lekren des Theophrastus Paracelsus 
von Hohenheim (Leipzig, [1898]). 
Denkwurdige Erinnerungen (Leipzig, [1898]). 
Die Medizin des Theophrastus Paracelsus von 
Hohenheim (Leipzig, [1899]). 

Kurzgefasste Grundriss der Geheimlehre (Leipzig, 
[1899]). 

Populare Vortrage uber Geheimwissenschaft 
(Leipzig, 1899). 

Tao-Teh-King (Leipzig, 1900). 

Betrachtungen liber die Mystik in Goethes 'Faust’ 
(Leipzig, [1900]). 

Unter den Adepten. Vertrauliche Mittheilungen 
aus den Kreisen der indischen Adepten und 
christlichen Mystiker (Leipzig, 1901). 
Mysterien, Symbole und magisch wirkende Krafie 
(Leipzig, 1902). 

Was ist Theosophie f (Leipzig, 1903). 

Sechs Zeugen fur die Wahrheit der Lehre von der 
Wiederverkorperung (Berlin, 1906). 

Der wissenschaftliche Beweis der Unsterblichkeit 
und die occulte Philosophic (Leipzig, 1 905). 
Uber den Verkehr mit der Geisterwelt (Leipzig, 
1905). 

Chemie und Alchemie (Leipzig, 1907). 



Die theosophische Verbriiderung der Menschheit 
(Leipzig, 1907). 

Philotheosophie (Leipzig, 1907). 

Der Socialismus vom Standpunkte der occulten 
Wissensckafi aus betrachtet (Leipzig, 1907). 

Hermetische Kindergeschichten (Leipzig, 1909). 

With the Adepts. An Adventure among the 
Rosicrucians, second edition (London, 

1910) . 

Unter den Adepten und Rosenkreuzem, second 
edition (Leipzig, [1912]). 

Max Heindel 

Die Weltanschauung der Rosenkreuzer oder 
Mysterisches Christentum , translated by S. 
v. d. Wiesen (Leipzig, 1913). 

Die Esoterik in Wagners ‘Tannhauser’ , translated 
by Arminius (Leipzig, [1918]). 

Vereinfachte wissenschaftliche Astrologie, trans- 
lated by Richard Voss (Leipzig, 1920). 

Die Rosenkreuzer- Mysterien (Leipzig, [1920]). 

Die Botschaft der Sterne , translated by Rudolf 
von SebottendorfT (Leipzig, 1921). 

Rosenkreuzer- Philosophic in Frage und Antwort 
(Leipzig, [1923]). 

Karl Heise 

Passionslegende und Osterbotschaft im Lichte der 
occulten Forschung (Leipzig, 1907). 

Lourdes (Lorch, 1908). 

Vom Pfad zum unermesslichen Lichte. Eine 
Studie uber den Buddhismus (Lorch, 1909). 

Karma, das universale Moralgesetz der Welt 
(Lorch, n.d.). 

Seelenwanderung (Lorch, n.d.). 

Das Alter der Welt im Lichte der okkulten 
Wissenschaft (Leipzig, 1910). 

Die astrale Konstitution des Menschen (Leipzig, 

1911) . 

Geschichte des Weltrieges und zum Verstandnis 
der wahren Freimaurerei (Basle, 1919). 

Die englisch-amerikanische Weltluge (mit einer 
Geheimakte aus englischen Freimaurer- 
logen (Constance, 1919). 

Lazar Hellenbach 

Mr Slade’s Aufenthalt in Wien (Leipzig 1878). 

1st Hansen ein Schwindler ? Eine Studie uber den 
‘animalischen Magnetismus’ (Leipzig, 
1887). 

Geburt und Todals Wechselder Anschauungsforrn 
oder die Doppel-Natur des Menschen (Leip- 
zig, 1897). 

Die Mage der Zahlen als Grundlage alter Man- 
nigfaltigkeit, second edition (Leipzig, 
1898). 

Franz Herndl 

Das Wortherkreuz. Mystisch-socialer Roman 
(Vienna, 1901). 



270 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Die Trutzburg. Autobiographische Skizzen des 
Einsiedlers auf der Insel Worth. Sozial- 
reformatorischer Roman (Leipzig, 1909). 

Wilhelm Hiibbe-Schleiden 

Jesus, ein Buddhist f Eine unkirchliche Betrachtung 
(Brunswick, 1890). 

Das Dasein als Lust, Leid und Liebe. Die altind- 
ische Weltanschauung in neuzeitlicher 
Darstellung (Brunswick, 1891). 

Hellenbach, der Vorkdmpfer fur Wahrheit und 
Menschlichkeit (Leipzig, 1891). 

Karma, die theosophische Begriindung der Ethik 
(Brunswick, 1894). 

Die Lehre der Wiederverkorperung im Christentum 
(Brunswick, 1894). 

Die geistige und die geschichtliche Bedeutung der 
theosophischen Bewegung (Brunswick, 
1894). 

Indien und die Indier (Hamburg, 1898). 

Das Streben nach Vollendung und dessen Voraus- 
setzung (Hamburg, 1900). 

Warum Weltmachtf Der Sinn unserer Kolonial- 
politik (Hamburg. 1906). 

Die Botschaft des Friedens (Leipzig, 1912). 

Das Morgenrot der Zukunft (Leipzig, 1912). 

Das Suchen des Meisters (Lorch, 1916). 

Karl Kiesewetter 

Geschichte des neueren Occultismus. 1. Teil. 
Geheimwissenschaftliche Systeme von Agrippa 
von Nettesheym bis zu Carl du Prel (Leipzig, 
1891). 

John Dee, ein Spiritist des 16. Jahrhunderts 
(Leipzig, 1893). 

Franz Anton Mesmer’s Leben und Lehre (Leipzig, 
1893). 

Geschichte des neueren Occultismus II. Teil. Die 
Geheimwissenschaften (Leipzig, 1895). 

Albert Kniepf 

Die Weissagungen des altfranzosischen Sehers 
Michel Nostradamus und der heutige Krieg 
(Hamburg, 1914). 

Ferdinand Maack 

Zur Einfuhrung in das Studium des Hypnotismus 
und thierischen Magnetismus (Neuwied, 
1888). 

Uber Phosphoressenz-Strahlen. Ein Beitrag zum 
Neo-Okkultismus (Berlin, 1897). 

Die Weisheit von der Welt-Kraft. Eine Dynamo- 
sopkie (Leipzig, 1897). 

Das sichtbare Newton’sche Spektrum als Aus- 
gangspunkt fur dynamosophische Betrach- 
tungen (Gross- Lichterfelde, 1897). 

Okkultismus, Was ist er? Was will erf Wie 
erreicht er sein Zielf (Berlin-Zehlendorf, 
1898). 



Die goldene Kette Homers. Ein zum Studium und 
zum Verstdndnis der gesamten hermetischen 
Litteratur unentbehrliches Hilfsbuch (Lorch, 
1905). 

Das Schachraumspiel (Potsdam, 1908). 

Carl du Prel 

Das weltliche Kloster. Eine Vision (Leipzig, 
1887). 

Die monistische Seelenlehre (Leipzig, 1888). 

Die Mystik der alten Griecken (Leipzig, 1 888). 

Das hypnotische Verbrechen und seine Entdeckung 
(Munich, 1889). 

Studien aus dem Gebiete der Geheimwissen- 
schaften (Leipzig, 1890). 

Das Sprechen in fremden Zungen (Leipzig, 
1892). 

Justinus Kemer und die Seherin von Prevorst 
(Leipzig, 1893). 

Die Entdeckung der Seele durch die Geheimwissen- 
schaften , 2 vols. (Leipzig, 1894). 

Der Tod, das Jenseits, das Leben im Jenseits 
(Munich, 1899). 

Die vorgeburtliche Erziehung als Weg zur 
Menschenziichtung (Jena, 1899). 

Die Magie als Naturwissenschaft, 2 vols. (Jena, 
1899). 

Hermann Rudolph 

Die Constitution der Materie und der Zusammen- 
hang zwischen ponderabler und imponderabler 
Materie (Berlin, 1898). 

Keine Religion ist hoher als die Wahrheit (Leipzig, 
1902). 

Die 'Theosophische Gesellschaft’ (Leipzig, 1902). 

Das Christentum, vom Standpunkte der occulten 
Philosophie aus betrachtet (Leipzig, 1902). 

Warum vertritt die 'Theosophische Gesellschaft’ 
das Prinzipder Toleranzf (Leipzig, 1902). 

Karma, das Gesetz der Wiedervergeltung und 
Harmonie im Weltall (Leipzig, 1904). 

Der verlorene Sohn (Ev. Lucae lb, 11-32) 
(Leipzig, 1904). 

Die Lebendigen und die Toten (Leipzig, 1904). 

Der Patriotismus und die theosophische Verbruder- 
ung der Menschheit (Leipzig, 1905). 

Die Ehe und die Geheimlehre (Leipzig, 1905). 

Kunst und Religion (Leipzig, 1907). 

Gibt es eine Weiterbildung der Religion f (Leipzig, 
1907). 

Unser Sonnensystem (Leipzig, 1907). 

Die Seelenlosen (Leipzig, 1909). 

Die deutschen Mdrcken als Zeugen einer uralten 
Religion (Leipzig, 1909). 

Die intemationale theosophische Verbriidemng 
und die kommende Rasse (Leipzig, 
1912). 



271 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



William Scott-Elliot 

Atlantis nach okkulten Quellen , translated by 
F. P. (Leipzig, [1903]). 

Das untergangene Lemuria, translated by A. 
von Ulrich (Leipzig, 1905). 

Max Ferdinand Sebaldt von Werth (also wrote 
under the pseudonyms Maximilian Ferdinand 
and G. Herman) 

Das ‘Angewandte’ Christentum. 'Emste Gedanken’ 
iiber die Fragen der Zeit , with Moritz von 
Egidy (Berlin, 1891). 

Maximilian Ferdinand 

D.l.S. ‘Sexualreligion’. Enthiillungen , 3 vols., 
Sexual-Mystik, Sexual-Moral, Sexual- 
Magie (Leipzig, 1897). 

‘Wanidis’. Der Triumph des Wahnes. D.l.S. Die 
arische ‘Sexualreligion’ als Volks- 
Veredelung in Zeugen, Leben und 
Sterben. Mit einem Anhang iiber 
Menschenziichtung von Carl du Prel 
(Leipzig, 1897). 

G. Herman 

'Genesis', das Gesetz der Zeugung, 5 vols. 
(Leipzig, 1898-1903). 

Naturgeschichte der Geschlechtsliebe (Leipzig, 
1899). 

Analogien der Iggdrasil , second edition of 
‘Sexual-Moral’ (Leipzig, 1905). 

Mythologie des Diaphetur , second edition of 
‘Sexual-Mystik’ (Leipzig, 1905). 

Xenologie des Saeming, second edition of 
‘Sexual-Magie’ (Leipzig, 1905). 

'Nackte Wahrhe.it’. Aktenmdssige Darstellung 
des Verhdltnisses zwischen Schdnheits-A benden 
und Nackt-Logen (Berlin, 1909). 

Max Seiling 

Maildnder, ein neuer Messias (Munich, 1888). 

Meine Erfahrungen avf dem Gebite des Spiritismus 
(Leipzig, 1898). 

Goethe und der Okkultisrrius (Leipzig, 1901). 

Ernst Haeckel und der ‘Spiritismus’ (Leipzig, 
1901). 

Pessimistische Weisheitskomer (Munich, 1901). 

Goethe und der Materialismus (Leipzig, 1 904). 

Die Kardinalfrage der Menschheit (Leipzig, 
1906). 

Peryt Shou 

Der Weltentag oder die grosse Periode des Lichtes 
(Manvantara) (Leipzig, 1910). 

Das Mysterium der Zentralsonne (Leipzig, 1910). 

Die Esoterik der Atlantier in ihrer Beziehung zur 
aegyptischen, babylonischen und jiidischen 
Geheimlehre (Leipzig, 1913). 

Die Heilkrafte des Logos (Berlin-Steglitz, 1913). 

Der Verkehr mit Wesen hoherer Welten (Berlin- 
Steglitz, 1914). 



Praktische Esoterik oder die Gesetze hoherer 
Welten (Leipzig, 1914). 

G. W. Surya (pseudonym for Demeter 

Georgiewitz-Weitzer) 

Modeme Rosenkreuzer oder die Renaissance 
der Geheimwissenschaften. Ein okkult - 
wissenschaftlicher Roman (Leipzig, 
1907). 

Die Sonne, das Licht und die Heilkraft des Lichtes 
(Leipzig, 1907). 

Der Triumph der Alchemie (Die Transmutation 
der Metalle) (Leipzig, 1908). 

Okkulte Medizin (Leipzig, 1909). 

Okkulte Astrophysik (Leipzig, 1910). 

Schlangenbiss und Tollwut (Leipzig, 1913). 

Rationelle Krebs- und Lupuskuren (Lorch, 
1913). 

Modeme Rosenkreuzer , second edition (Leip- 
zig, 1914). 

Ernst Tiede 

Die Stimme im Verborgenen (Lorch, 1906). 

Der Damon des deutschen Volkes (Lorch, 1907). 

Astrologische Mutmassungen iiber den Krieg der 
Deutschen 1914 (Leipzig, 1914). 

Ur- Arische Gotteserkenntnis. Ihrneues Erwachen 
im Sonnenrecht und die Ersch lies sung der 
kleinen und grossen Mysterien (Berlin, 1 9 1 7). 

Astrologisches Lexikon (Leipzig, (1922]). 

Arthur Weber 

Uber die Unsterblichkeit der menschlichen Seele 
(Lorch, 1903). 

Die Bewusstseinreiche im Weltall (Leipzig, 
1904). 

Die sieben Grundkrdfte oder Schwingungszustande 
in der Konstitution des Menschen (Leipzig, 
1906). 

Die Zitronenkur (Leipzig, 1910). 

Paul Zillmann 

Die neue Hochschule fur animalischen (Heil-) 
Magnetismus in Deutschland (Gross- 
Lichterfelde, 1898). 

Zur Metaphysik des Klavierspieles (Gross- 
Lichterfelde, 1908). 

Die Wald-Loge. Die okkulte Gemeinde Deutsch- 
lands (Gross- Lichterfelde, [1912]). 

II. Guido (von) List 

(a) Newspaper Journalism 

Articles in Ostdeutsche Rundschau. Wiener 

Wochenschrift fur Politik, Volkswirtschaft, 

Kunst und Literatur, edited by K. H. Wolf. 

‘Gotterdaminerung’, OR, 1 October 1893, pp. 

1-3. 



272 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



‘Allerseelen und der vorchristlicheTodtenkult 
des deutschen Voikes, Oft, 31 October 
1893, pp. 10-11. 

‘Der WeinkeUerschliissel. Eine Humoreske 
aus der Casarenzeit’, OR, 3 November 
1893, p.7; OR, 4 November 1893, p. 12; 
OR, 6 November 1893, p. 5; OR, 7 No- 
vember 1893, p. 7; OR, 8 November 1893, 
p. 7; OR, 9 November 1893, p. 7; OR, 10 
November 1893, p. 7; OR, 11 November 
1893, p. 12; OR, 13 November 1893, p. 5; 
OR, 14 November 1893, p. 12; OR, 16 
November 1893, p. 7; OR, 17 November 
1893, p. 7; OR, 18 November 1893, p. 12; 
OR, 20 November 1893, p. 5; OR, 21 
November 1893, p. 7; OR, 22 November 

1893, p. 7. 

‘Die Zwolften’, OR, 30 December 1893, pp. 9- 
12 . 

‘Die deutsche Mythologie im Rahmen eines 
Kalendeijahres’, OR, 14 January 1894, pp. 
9-10; OR, 23 March 1894, pp. 1-2; OR, 24 
March 1894, pp. 1-3; OR, 25 April 1894, 
pp. 1-2; OR, 27 April 1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 29 
May 1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 1 June 1894, pp. 1- 
3; Oft, 13 July 1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 14 July 

1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 27 July 1894, pp. 1-3; 
Oft, 28 July 1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 28 August 
1894, pp. 1—2; OR, 29 August 1894, pp. 1- 
2; Oft, 27 September 1894, pp. 1-4; Oft, 27 
October 1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 30 October 

1894, pp. 1-2; Oft, 30 November 1 894, pp. 
1-3; Oft, 30 December 1894, pp. 1-3. 

‘Die Bliitezeit des deutschen Handwerkes im 
Mittelalter’, Oft, 13 February 1895, pp. 1- 
3; Oft, 14 February 1895, pp. 1-3. 
‘Donau-Delawaren (eine Humoreske aus dem 
Donauruderleben)’, Oft, 26 February 1895, 
pp. 1-3. 

‘Das Marcus Curtiusloch in Wien’, Oft, 3 May 

1895, pp. 1-3. 

‘Ein Idyll aus dem alten Wien’, Oft, 30 May 
1895, pp. 1-3. 

‘Ludwig Ritter von Mertens’, Oft, 28 June 
1895, pp. 1-2. 

‘Was eine verregnete Raxbesteigung alles ver- 
schulden kann’, Oft, 14 July 1895, pp. 1-3. 
‘Chremisa. Ein Festgruss zum neunhundert- 
jahrigen Jubilaum der Stadt Krems a.d. 
Donau’, Oft, 10 August 1895, pp. 1-2. 
‘Die alten Hofe Wiens’, Oft, 28 August 1895, 

pp. 1-2. 

‘Der deutsche Zauberglaube im Bauwesen’, 
Oft, 25 September 1895, pp. 1-2; Oft, 26 
September 1895, pp. 1-2. 

‘Die Griindung des Klosters Cotwich. Histor- 



ische Novelle aus dem elften Jahrhundert’, 
Oft, 29 September 1895, p. 7; Oft, 1 
October 1895, p. 5; Oft, 2 October 1895, 
p. 6; Oft 3 October 1895, p. 5; Oft, 4 
October 1 895, p. 7 ; Oft, 5 October 1 895, p. 
7; Oft 6 October 1895, p. 10; Oft, 8 
October 1895, p. 5; Oft, 1 0 October 1 895, p. 5; 
Oft, 11 October 1895, p. 7; Oft, 13 October 

1895, p. 7; Oft, 15 October 1895, p. 5. 
‘Mephistopheles’, Oft, 28 December 1895, pp. 

1-2; Oft, 31 December 1895, pp. 1-3. 
‘Die Juden als Staat und Nation’, Oft, 12 
February 1896, pp. 1-2. 

‘Die alte Schule zu St. Anna in Wien’, Oft, 26 
February 1896, pp. 1-2; Oft, 28 February 

1896, pp. 1-2. 

‘Die Liebe in der deutschen Mythologie’, Oft, 
16 April 1896, pp. 1-2. 

‘Ostara’s Einzug’, Oft, 22 May 1896, pp. 1-3. 
‘Schone Frauen’, Oft, 29 August 1896, pp. 
1-3. 

‘Die Michaelskirche in Heiligenstadt in Wien’, 
Oft, 15 November 1896, pp. 9-10. 

‘Vom Jubilaumstheater in Wahring’, Oft, 12 
April 1896, pp. 5-6; Oft, 21 April 1896, 
pp. 1-2; Oft, 28 April 1896, pp. 1-2; Oft, 
10 May 1896, pp. 1-3; Oft, 31 May 1896,. 
pp. 1-4; Oft, 15 October 1896, pp. 1-3; 
Oft, 22 December 1896, pp. 1-2. 

Articles in Leipziger lllustrierte Zeitung. 

‘Die Hieroglyph ik der Germanen’, LIZ, 4 May 

1905, pp. 680-1. 

‘Mistel und Weihnachtsbaum’, LIZ, 21 
December 1905, p. 950. 

‘Die Hieroglyphik der Germanen. II. Weitere 
Hieroglyphen der Heraldik’, LIZ, 1 5 March 

1906, pp. 417-18. 

‘Die Kunst des Feuerziindens und die Erfin- 
dung des Rades und des Wagens’, LIZ, 16 
August 1906, pp. 278-9. 

‘Die Hieroglyphik der Germanen. III. Der 
Einfluss der Kala auf die Entwicklung der 
heraldischen Hieroglyphen’, LIZ, 31 
January 1907, pp. 188—9. 

(b) Periodical Articles 
‘Die symbolischen Bildwerke am Riesenthore 
der Stefanskirche zu Wien’, Laufers AUgemeine 
Kunst- Chronik 12 (1889), 250-1, 283-4, 
307-10. 

‘Ursprung und Wesen der Wappen’, Der 
Sammler 13 (1891), 54-6, 65-7. 

‘Von der Wuotanspriesterschaft’, Das Zwanzigste 
Jahrhundert 4 (1893), 1 19-26, 242-51, 343- 
52, 442-51. 



273 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



‘Die esoterische Bedeutung religioser Symbole’, 
Die Gnosis 1 (1903), 323-7. 

‘Vom Wuotanstum zum Christentum’, Der 
Deutsche 1 (1904), 403-12. 

‘ Das Geheimnis der Runen\ Neue Metaphysische 
Rundschau [9] 13 (1906), 23-4, 75-87, 104- 
26. 

‘Von der Armanenschaft der Arier’, Neue 
Metaphysische Rundschau [9] 13 (1906), 162- 
75, 214-26. 

‘Ursprung und Symbolik der Freimaurerei’, 
Die Nomen 1 (18 October 1912), 5-8. 

‘Neuzeitliche Einherier’, Osterreichische lllus- 
trierte Rundschau 4(1916), reprinted in Balzli, 
op. cit., pp. 116-24. 

‘Werist der Starke von Oben?’, Prana 7(1917), 
reprinted in Balzli, op. cit., pp. 125-33. 

‘Uber die Moglichkeit eines ewigen Welt- 
friedens’, Prana 7(1917), reprinted in Balzli, 
op. cit., pp. 134-8. 

(c) Books 

Camuntum. Historischer Roman aus dem 4. Jahr- 
hundert n. Chr ., 2 vols. (Berlin, 1888). 

Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder (Berlin, 
1891). 

Tauf-, Hochzeits- und Bestattungs-Gebrauche und 
deren Ursprung (Salzburg, 1892). 

Utteraria sodalitas Danubiana (Vienna, 1893). 

Jung Diether’s Heimkehr. Eine Sonnwend-Geschichte 
aus demjahre 488 n. Chr. (Brno, 1894). 

Der Wala Erweckung (Vienna, 1894). 

Walkiiren-Weihe. Epische Dichtung (Brno, 1895). 

Pipara. Die Germanin im Casarenpurpur. Historischer 
Roman aus dem J. Jahrhundert n. Chr., 2 vols. 
(Leipzig, 1895). 

Niederosterreichisches Winzerbiichlein (Vienna, 

1898) . 

Der Unbesiegbare. Ein Grundzuggermanischer Welt- 
anschauung (Vienna, 1898). 

Konig Vannius. Ein deutsches Konigsdrama (Brno, 

1899) . 

Der Wiederaufbau von Camuntum (Vienna, 1900). 

Sommer-Sonnwend-Feuerzauber. Skaldisches Weihe- 
spiel (Vienna, 1901). 

Alraunen-Maren. Kulturhistorische Novellen und 
Dichtungen aus germanischer Vorzeit (Vienna, 
1903). 

Das Goldstiick. Ein Liebesdrama in funf Aufzugen 
(Vienna, 1903). 

Das Geheimnis der Runen [GLB 1] (Gross-Lichter- 
felde, 1908). 

Die Armanenschaft der Ario-Gennanen [GLB 2} 
(Leipzig and Vienna, 1908). 



Die Rita der Ario-Germanen [GLB 3] (Leipzig and 
Vienna, 1908). 

Die Namen der Volkerstdmme Germaniens und deren 
Deutung [GLB 4} (Leipzig and Vienna, 1 909). 

Die Religion der Ario-Germanen in ihrer Esoterik und 
Exoterik (Zurich, 1909 or 1910). 

Die Bilderschrift der Ario-Germanen (Ario-Germanische 
Hieroglyphic.) [GLB 5] (Leipzig and Vienna, 
1910). 

Die Armanenschaft der Ario-Germanen. Zweiter Teil 
[GLB 2a] (Leipzig and Vienna, 1911). 

Der Ubergang vom Wuotanstum zum Christentum 
(Zurich, 1911). 

Die Armanenschaft der Ario-Germanen. Erster Teil, 
second edition (Vienna, [1913]). 

Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder, second 
edition, 2 vols. (Vienna, [1913]). 

Die Ursprache der Ario-Gennanen und ihre Mysterien- 
sprache [GLB 6] (Leipzig and Vienna, [191 4]). 

(d) Biographical and Literary Studies 

Johannes Balzli, Guido v. List. Der Wiederent- 
decker uralter arischer Weisheit (Leipzig and 
Vienna, 1917). 

E: H., ‘Guido List (Lebensbild eines Wiener 
Poeten)’, Randglossen zur deutschen Literatur- 
geschichte 11 (1905), 1-58. 

August Horneffer, ‘Guido von List, der vdlk* 
ische Philosoph und Prophet’, Am rauhen 
Stein 29 (1932), 35-45. 

Inge Kunz, ‘Herrenmenschentum, Neuger- 
manen und Okkultismus. Eine soziologische 
Bearbeitung der Schriften von Guido List’ 
(unpublished Dr. phil. thesis, University 
of Vienna, 1961). 

[J. Lanz-Liebenfels], Guido von List, ein modemer 
Skalde (Gross- Lichterfelde, [1907]). 

J. Lanz von Liebenfels, ‘Guido von List. Eine 
ariomantische Studies Zeitschrift fur Menschen- 
kenntnis und Schicksalsforschung 2 (1927), 74- 
89. 

Philipp Stauff, ‘Guido von List gestorben’, 
Miinchener Beobachter, 24 May 1919, p. 4. 

Philipp Stauff, ‘Von unseres Meisters letzter 
Zeit’, in Guido von List, Die Rita der Ario- 
Germanen, third edition (Berlin, 1920), 
appendix pp. I— VI 1 1 . 

Franz Wastian, ‘Guido v. List, ein deutscher 
Erzieher’, Sudmark-Kalender 13 (1910), 
119-23. 

Arthur Wolf-Wolfsberg, ‘Guido von List, Der 
Skalde, Seher und Forscher’, Zeitschrift fur 
Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung 2 
(1927), 93-6. 



274 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



III. Adolf Josef Lanz alias 
Jorg Lanz von Liebenfels 

(a) Periodical Articles 
‘Berthoid v. Treun. Eine Studie von Fr. G . . 
O.C.\ Mittheilungen des Alterthums-Vereins zu 
Wien 30 (1894), 137-40. 

‘Das Necrologium Sancrucense Modernum’, 
Archiv fur Osterreichische Geschichte 89 ( 1 900). 
247-354. 

‘Anthropozoon biblicum’, Vierteljakrssckrift 
fur Bibelkunde 1 (1903), 307-16, 317-55, 
429-69; Vierteljahrsschrift fur Bibelkunde 2 
(1904), 26-60, 314-34, 395-412. 
‘ZurTheologiedergotischen Bibel\ Vierteljahrs- 
schrift fur Bibelkunde 1 (1903), 497-8. 

‘Die Armee des schwarzen Papstes’, Das freie 
Wort 2 (1903), 394-402, 451-9, 721-9. 
‘Die Urgeschichte der Kunste’, Politisch-Anthro- 
pologische Revue 2 (1903), 134-56. 
‘Deutschland und die Jesuiten’, Politisch- 
Anthropologische Revue 3 (1904), 389-91. 
‘Der grosse Kampf desjesuitismus gegen den 
Katholizismus’, Das freie Wort 3 (1904), 49- 
56. 

‘Leo XIII., der “Friedenspapst”’, Das freie Wort 

3 (1904), 338-46. 

‘Politische Anthropologie’, Das freie Wort 3 
(1904), 778-95. 

‘Die Jesuiten vor “Phams’”, Das freie Wort 4 
(1905), 63-9, 118-23. 

‘Menschenveredelung’, Das freie Wort 4 (1905), 
189-92. 

‘Die Deutschen als Wirtschaftsgrossmacht in 
Osterreich. Ein freies Wort zum osterreich- 
ischen Problem’, Das freie Wort 4 (1905), 
582-90. 

‘Zur Anthropologie des Genies’, Das freie Wort 

4 (1905), 887-94. 

‘Eine neue Schule’, Hammer 4 (1905), 369-71. 
‘Germanischer Advent’, Hammer 5 ( 1 906), 97- 
9. 

‘Ungarns wirtschaftlicher Bankerott’, Hammer 

5 (1906), 395-7. 

‘Der heilige Gral’, Stein der Weisen 20 (1907), 
218-26. 

‘Die Babenberger’ and ‘Kloster und heilige 
Statten in Osterreich’, in Osteneichs Hort. 
Geschichts- und Kulturbilder aus den Habsburg- 
ischen Erbldndem , edited by Albin von 
Teuffenbach zu Tiefenbach und Massweg 
(Vienna, 1910), pp. 22-49, 276-90. 



(b) Books 

Katholizimus wider Jesuitismus (Frankfurt, 1 903). 

Das Breve ' Dominus ac redemptor nosier’ (Frankfurt, 
[1904]). 

Der Taxil-Schwindel. Ein welthistorischer (Jlk 
(Frankfurt, [1904]). 

Theozoologie oder Die Kunde von den Sodoms - 
Afflingen und dem Gotter-Elektron. Eine Ein- 
fuhrung in die alteste und neueste Weltan- 
schauung und eine Rechtfertigung des 
Fiirstentums und des Adels (Vienna, [1905]). 

Der Affenmensch der Bibel (Bibeldokumente 1) 
(Gross- Lichterfelde, n.d.). 

Die Theosophie und die assyrischen ‘Menschentiere’ 
in ihrem Verhaltnis zu den neuesten Resultaten 
der anthropologischen Forschung (Bibel- 
dokumente 2) (Gross- Lichterfelde, 1907). 

Die Archaologie und Anthropologie und die assyrichen 
Menschenthiere (Bibeldokumente 3) (Gross* 
Lichterfelde, n.d.). 

Die griechischen Bibelversionen (Septauginta und 
Hexapla), Vol. i. (Orbis antiquitatum Pars 
II, Tom. I, Vol. i) (Vienna, 1908). 

Die lateinischen Bibelversionen (Itala und Vulgata), 
Vol. i. (Orbis antiquitatum Pars II, Tom. 2, 
Vol. i.) (Vienna, 1909). 

‘Geschichte der Burg Werfenstein’, in Ludwig 
Commenda, Neuer illustrierter Fixhrer durch 
Grein und Umgebung (Grein, 1910), pp. 84- 
95. 

Weltende und Weltwende. Der Zusammenbruch 
der europaischen Kulturwelt (Lorch, 1923). 

Praktisch-empirisches Handbuch der ariosophischen 
Astrologie. Bd. 1 Die Berechnung von 
Geburtshoroskopen (Dusseldorf-Unterrath, 
1923). 

Praktisch-empirisches Handbuch der ariosophischen 
Astrologie. Bd. 2 Die Deutung von Geburts- 
horoskopen (A stroma r tie) (Berlin, 1933). 

Das Buck der Psalmen teutsch, das Gebetbuch der 
Ariosophen, Rassenmystiker und Anti- 
simiten. Bd. l Text (Dusseldorf-Unterrath, 
1926). 

Grundriss der ariosophischen Geheimlehre (Oestrich, 
1925). 

Ariosophische Rassenphrenologie (Dusseldorf- 
Unterrath, 1926). 

Jakob Lorber, das grosste ariosophische Medium der 
Neuzeit. 

I. Teil Lebensgang und die Mysterien der 

irdischen Welt. 

II. Teil Die Mysterien der planetarischen 
Welt. 

III. Teil Die Mysterien der makrokos- 
mjschen Welt. 



275 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



IV. Teil Die Mysterien der mikrokos- 
mischenmischen Welt. 
(Dusseldorf-Unterrath, 1926). 

Das Sakrament der Ehe im Lichte der ariosophischen 
Theologie (Dusseldorf-Unterrath, 1926). 

Die anosophische Kabbalistik von Name und Ortlich- 
keit, with Meister Archibald and Meister 
Amalarich (Dusseldorf-Unterrath, 1926). 
Abriss der ariosophischen Rassenphysiognomik 
(Pforzheim, 1927). 

Ariosophische Urgeschichte der Handwerke und 
Kiinste (Pforzheim, 1928). 

Ariosophisches Wappenbuch (Pforzheim, 1928). 

(c) Pamphlet-Series 

Ostara. First Series. Graz, 1905, Rodaun, 1906- 
13, Modling, 1913-16. All titles written by 
Lanz von Liebenfels unless another author 
is indicated. 

1 Die osterreichischen Deutschen und 

die Wahlreform (Graz, 1905). 

2 Wahlreform, Gewerbereform, Rechts- 

reform. Von sc (Rodaun, March 

1906). 

3 Revolution oder Evolution? Eine frei- 

konservadve Osterpredigt fur das 
Herrentum europaischer Rasse 
(April 1906). 

4 Ungarns wirtschaftlicher Bankerott und 

wie machen wir Ungam kirre? (May 

1906) . 

5 Landgraf werde hart, eine altdeutsche 

Voikssage neuzeittumlich erzalt 
von Adolf Hagen (June 1906). 

6 Die Reichskleinodien zuriick nach dem 

Reich! Volkische Richtlinien fur 
unsere Zukunft von Harald Arjuna 
Gravell van Jostenoode (July 1 906). 

7 Ostara, die Auferstehung des Menschen. 

Eine Festschrift von Dr. phil. Adolf. 
Harpf (August 1906). 

8 Die deutsch-osterreichischen Alpen- 

lander als Fleisch- und Milch- 
produzenten. Eine volkswirtschaft- 
liche Studie von Ingenieur L. von 
Bernuth (August 1906). 

9 Der volkische Gedanke, das aristokrat- 

ische Prinzip unserer Zeit, von Dr. 
phil. Adolf Harpf (September 1906). 
10/13 Anthropogonika - Urmensch und 
Rasse im Schrifttum der Alten, aus- 
gewahlte rassengeschichtliche 
Urkunden (October 1906). 

11/12 Das Weibwesen, eine Kulturstudie, 
von Dr. phil. Adolf Harpf (January 

1907) . 

14 Triumph Israels, von R. Freydank 



(March 1907). 

Das Ganze voran! (Spring 1907). 

15 Weibliche Erwerbsfahigkeit und Prosti- 

tution, von Dr. Eduard Ritter von 
Liszt (April 1907). 

16 Juda’s Geldmonopol im Aufgang und 

Zenith, zwei Zeitgedichte, von Dr. 
Adolf Wahrmund (June 1907). 

1 7 DieTitelfrage der Techniker (July 1907). 

1 8 Rasse und Wohlfahrtspflege, ein Aufruf 

zum Streikder wahllosen Wohltatig- 
keit (December 1907). 

19/20 Die Zeit des ewigen Friedens, eine 
Apologie des Krieges als Kultur- 
und Rassenauffrischer, von Dr. 
Adolf Harpf (January 1908). 

2 1 Rasse und Weib und seine Vorliebe fur 
den Mann der niederen Artung 
(March 1908). 

22/23 Das Gesetzbuch des Manu und die 
Rassenpflege bei den alten Indo- 
Ariern (April 1908). 

24 Uber Patentrecht und Rechtlosigkeit 

des geistigen Arbeiters. Von sc (May 

1908). 

25 Das Ariertum und seine Feinde, von 

Dr. Harald Gravell van Jostenoode 
(July 1908). 

26 Einfiihrung in die Rassenkunde. 

27 Beschreibende Rassenkunde. 

28 Antlitz und Rasse, ein Abriss der 

rassenkundlichen Physiognomik. 

29 Allgemeine rassenkundliche Somato- 

logie. 

30 Besondere rassenkundliche Somato- 

logie I. 

31 Besondere rassenkundliche Somato- 

logie II. 

32 Vom Steuer-eintreibenden zum Divi- 

denden-zahlenden Staat (1909). 

33 Die Gefahren des Frauenrechtes und 

die Notwendigkeit der mannesrecht- 
lichen Herrenmoral (1909). 

34 Die rassenwirtschaftliche Losung des 

sexuellen Problems (1909). 

35 Neue physikalische und mathematische 

Beweise fur das Dasein der Seele 
(1910). 

36 Das Sinnes- und Geistesleben der 

Blonden und Dunklen (1910). 

3 7 Charakterbeurteilung nach der Schadel- 
form, eine gemeinverstandliche 
Rassen-Phrenologie (1910). 

38 Das Geschlechts- und Liebesleben der 
Blonden und Dunklen I. Anthro- 
pologischer Teil (1910). 



276 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



39 Das Geschlechts- und Liebesleben der 

Bionden und Dunkien II. Kultur- 
geschichtlicher Teil (1910). 

40 Rassenpsychologie des Erwerbslebens 

I. Die Verarmung der Bionden und 
der Reichtum der Dunkien (1910). 

41 Rassenpsychologie des Erwerbslebens 

IE Die maskierte Dieberei als 
Erwerbsprinzip der Dunkien. Eine 
Auflarung fur Blonde (1910). 

42 Die Bionden und Dunkien im politischen 

Leben der Gegenwart (1910). 

43 Einfiihrung in die Sexual-Physik oder 

die Liebe als odischeEnergie(191 1). 

44 Die Komik der Frauenrechtlerei, eine 

heitere Chronik der Weiberwirt- 
schaft (1911). 

45 Die Tragik der Frauenrechtlerei, eine 

ernste Chronik der Weiberwirt- 
schaft (1911). 

46 Moses als Darwinist, eine Einfiihrung 

in die anthropologische Religion 
(1911). 

4 7 Die Kunst schon zu lieben und gliickiich 

zu heiraten, ein rassen-hygienisches 
Brevier fiir Liebesleute (1911). 

48 Genesis oder Moses als Antisimit, d.i. 

Bekampfer der Affenmenschen 
und Dunkelrassen (1911). 

49 Die Kunst der gliicklichen Ehe, ein 

rassenhygienisches Brevier fiir Ehe- 
Rekruten und Ehe-Veteranen (1911). 

50 Urheimat und Urgeschichte der bionden 

heroischen Rasse (1911). 

51 Kallipadie, oder die Kunst der bewus- 

sten Kinderzeugung, ein rassen- 
hygienisches Brevier fiir Vater und 
Mutter (1911). 

52 Die Bionden als Schopfer der Sprachen, 

ein Abriss der Ursprachenschop- 
fung (Protolinguistik). 

53 Das Mannesrecht als Retter aus der 

Geschlechtsnot der Weiberwirtschaft 
(1912). 

54 Exodus, oder Moses als Prediger der 

Rassenauslese und Rassenmoral 
(1912). 

55 Die soziale, politische und sexuelle 

Weiberwirtschaft unserer Zeit (1912). 

56 Die rassentiimliche Erziehung und die 

Befreiung der Bionden aus der 
Schreckenherrschaft der Ts chan d ala- 
Schule (1912). 

5 7 Die rassentiimliche Wirtschaftsordnung 

und die Befreiung der Bionden aus 
der Schreckenherrschaft der tschan- 



dalistischen Ausbeuter (1912). 

58 Die entsitdichende und verbrecherische 

Weiberwirtschaft unserer Zeit 
(1912). 

59 Das arische Christentum als Rassen- 

kultreligion der Bionden, eine Ein- 
fiihrung in die HI. Schrift des Neuen 
Testamentes (1912). 

60 Rassenbewussdose und rassenbewusste 

Lebens- und Liebeskunst, ein 
Brevier fiir die reife, blonde J ugend 
(1912). 

61 Rassenmischung und Rassenent- 

mischung (1912). 

62 Die Bionden und Dunkien als Heer- 

und Truppenfiihrer (1913). 

63 Die Bionden und Dunkien als Truppen 

(1913). 

64 Viel oder wenig Kinder (1913). 

65 Rasse und Krankheit, ein Abriss der 

allgemeinen und theoretischen 
Rassenpathologie (1913). 

66 Nackt- und Rassenkultur im Kampf 

gegen Mucker- und Tschandalen- 
kultur (1913). 

67 Die Beziehungen der Dunkien und 

Bionden zur Krankheit, ein Abriss 
der besonderen und praktischen 
Rassenpathologie (Vienna, 1913). 

68 Der Wiederaufstieg der Bionden zu 

Reichtum und Macht, eine Ein- 
fiihrung in die Rassensoziologie 
(Vienna, 1913). 

69 Der Gral als das Mysterium der arisch- 

christlichen Rassenkuhreligion 
(1913). 

70 Die Bionden als Schopfer der techni- 

schen Kultur (Modling, 1913). 

71 Rasse und Adel (1913). 

72 Rasse und aussere Politik (1913). 

7 3 Die Bionden als Musik-Schopfer (1913). 

74 Rassenmetaphysik oder die Unster- 

blichkeit des hoheren Menschen 
(1914). 

75 Die Bionden als Trager und Opfer der 

technischen Kultur (1914). 

76 Die Prostitution in frauen- und 

mannesrechdichen Beurteilung 
(1914). 

7 7 Rassen und Baukunst im Altertum und 

Mittelalter (1914). 

78 Rassenmvstik, eine Einfiihrung in die 

ariochristliche Geheimlehre (1915). 

79 Rassenphvsik des Krieges 1914/15 

(1915).' 

80 Einfiihrung in die prakdsche Rassen- 

metaphysik (1915). 



277 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



8 1 Rassenmetaphysik des Krieges 1914/15 

(1915). 

82 Templeisen- Brevier, ein Andachtsbuch 

fur wissende und innerliche Ario- 
christen 1. Teil (1915). 

83 Rasse und Dichtkunst (1916). 

84 Rasse und Philosophic (1916). 

85 Rasse und Baukunst in der Neuzeit 

(1916). 

86 Rasse und Malerei (1916). 

87 Rasse und innere Politik (1916). 

88 Templeisen-Brevier, ein Andachtsbuch 

fur wissende und innerliche Ario- 
christen 2. Teil (1916). 

89 Rassenphysik der Heiligen (1917). 

Ostara. Second Series. Magdeburg, 1922. 

1 Die Ostara und das Reich der Blonden 
(1922). 

Ostara. Third series. Vienna, 1927-31. 

1 Die Ostara und das Reich der Blonden 

(1927). 

2 Der Weltkrieg als Rassenkampf der 

Dunklen gegen die Blonden ( 1 927) . 

3 Die Weltrevolution als Grab der Blon- 

den (1928). 

4 Der Weltfriede als Werk und Sieg der 

Blonden (1928). 

5 Theozoologie oder Naturgeschichte 

der Gotter I. Der ‘aite Bund’ und 
alte Gott (1928). 

6/7 Theozoologie oder Naturgeschichte 
der Gotter II. Die Sodomssteine 
und Sodomswasser (1928). 

8/9 Theozoologie oder Naturgeschichte 
der Gotter III. Die Sodomsfeuer 
und Sodomslufte (1928). 

10 Anthropogonika, Urmensch und Rasse 

im Schrifttum der Alten (1931). 

1 1 Der wirtschaftliche Wiederaufbau durch 

die Blonden, eine Einfuhrung in 
die privatwirtschaftliche Rassen- 
okonomie (1929). 

12 Die Diktatur des blonden Patriziates, 

eine Einfuhrung in die staatswirt- 
schaftliche Rassendkonomie (1929). 
13/14 Der zoologische und talmudische 
Ursprung des Bolschewismus ( 1 930). 
15 Theozoologie oder Naturgeschichte 
der Gotter IV. Der neue Bund und 
neue Gott (1929). 

16/17 Theozoologie V. Der Gotter-Vater und 
Gotter-Geist oder die Unsterblich- 
keit in Materie und Geist (1929). 
18 Theozoologie oder Naturgeschichte 



der Gotter VI. Der Gottersohn und 
die Unsterblichkeit in Keim und 
Rasse (1930). 

19 Theozoologie VII. Die unsterbliche 

Gotterkirche (1930). 

20 Rasse und Wohfahrtspflege, ein Aufruf 

zum Streik der wahllosen Wohltatig- 
keit (1930). 

2 1 Rasse und Wcib und seine Vorliebe fur 

den Mann der minderen Artung 
(1929). 

22/23 Rasse und Recht und das Gesetzbuch 
des Manu (1929). 

26 Einfuhrung in die Rassenkunde ( 1 930). 

27 Beschreibende Rassenkunde (1930). 

28 Antlitz und Rasse, ein Abriss der 

rassenkundlichen Physiognomik 
(1931). 

29 Allgemeine rassenkundliche Somato- 

logie (1931). 

33 Die Gefahren des Frauenrechts und 

die Notwendigkeit des Mannes- 
rechts (1929). 

34 Die rassenwirtschaftliche Losung des 

sexuellen Problems (1928). 

35 Neue physikalische und mathematische 

Beweise fur das Dasein der Seele 
(1929). 

36 Das Sinnes- und Geistesleben der 

Blonden und Dunklen (1929). 

38 Das Geschlechts- und Liebesleben der 
Blonden und Dunklen I. Anthro- 
pologischer Teil (1929). 

43 Einfuhrung in die Sexual-Physik oder 
die Liebe als odische Energie ( 1 93 1). 
47 Die Kunst, schon zu lieben und gluck- 
lich zu heiraten; ein rassenhygien- 
isches Brevier fur Liebesleute ( 1 928). 
49 Die Kunst der gliicklichen Ehe, ein 
rassenhygienisches Brevier fur Ehe- 
Rekruten und Ehe-Veteranen ( 1 929). 
5 1 Kallipadie oder die Kunst der bewussten 
Kinderzeugung, ein rassenhygien- 
isches Brevier fur Vater und Mutter 
(1931). 

61 Rassenmischung und Rassenent- 
mischung (1930). 

78 Rassenmystik, eine Einfuhrung in die 
ariochristliche Geheimlehre (1929). 
90 Des hi. Abtes Bernhard von Clairvaux 
Lobpreis auf die neue Tem pel ritter- 
schaft und mystische Kreuzfahrt 
ins hi. Land (1929). 

91/93 Die Heiligen als Kultur- und rassen- 
geschichtliche Hieroglvphen 
(1930). 



278 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



94 Rasse und Bildhauerei I. Rassenanthro- 

pologischer Tei! (1931). 

95 Rasse und Bildhauerei II. Rassen- 

geschichtlicher Teil (1931). 

1 0 1 Johann Walthari Wolfl, Lanz-Liebenfels 
und sein Werk 1. Teil: Einfuhrung 
in die Theorie (1927). 

Ariomantische Biicherei. Lucerne, 1933- 
c.37. The series appeared under the 
various tides Ariomantische Briefe an 
meine Freunde, Briefe an meine Freunde, 
Ltizemer Briefe an meine Freunde and 
was not issued through the book- 
trade, but as a private edition. After 
No. 24 the dating of these pamphlets 
is unreliable. 

1 Blondheit und Rasse. Eine Einfiihrung 

in die Ariomantik (1933). 

2 Die arioheroische Rasse und das Wirt- 

schaftsleben oder: Wie wird der 
Blonde reich? (1934). 

3 Der elektrische Urgott und sein grosses 

Heiligtum in der Vorzeit (1933). 

4 Das wiederentdeckte Vineta-Rethra 

und die arisch-chrisdiche Urreligion 
der Elektrizitat und Rasse (1934). 

5 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik I. Teil: Wesen 
und Zweck der Mystik (1934). 

6 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik II. Teil: Natur- 
wissenschafdiche Begrfindung 
(1934). 

7 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik III. Teil: Die 
mystische Vorbereitung (Praeam- 
bulum). 

8 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik IV. Teil: Lauterung 
(purgatio) und Beschauung (con- 
templatio) (1934). 

9 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik V. Teil: Die mys- 
tische Verzfickung u. Hochzeit 
(Ecstasis u. Unio) (1934). 

10 Praktische Einfuhrung in die arisch- 

chrisdiche Mystik VI. Teil: Praxis, 
Geschichte und Literatur der Mystik 
(1934). 

11 Uber den Umgang mit Tschandalen, 

ein neuer ‘Knigge’. I. Teil (1934). 

12 UbeT den Umgang mit Tschandalen, 

ein neuer ‘Knigge’, II. Teil [1934]. 

13 Uber den Umgang mit Tschandalen, 

ein neuer ‘Knigge’, III. Teil [1934]. 



14 Ariomantische Boden- und Lebens- 

pflege I. Teil [1935]. 

15 Ariomantische Boden- und Lebens- 

pflege II. Teil [1935]. 

16 Ariomantische Boden- und Lebens- 

pflege III. Teil [1935]. 

20 Die Theorie der natur- und artgemassen 

Ernahrungs- u. Lebensweise(1935). 

21 Ariomanrischer Brief fiber Praxis und 

Kochkunst der naturgemassen 
E rnah rungsweise . 

22 Ariomanrischer Brief an Sephin fiber 

Mode und Menschenkunde [ 1 935]. 

23 Ariomanrischer Brief an Peppo fiber 

Praxis der naturgemassen Land- 
wirtschaft [1935]. 

24 Ariomanrischer Brief an Roderich fiber 

die Urreligion der Engel und 
Walkfiren im biblischen und 
nordischen Schrifttum [1935]. 

25 Ariomantischer Brief an Peppo fiber 

Garten und Kiiche als Grundlage 
der Gesundheit [1934]. 

26 Ariomantischer Brief an Walter fiber 

die Priesterschaft des Orpheus und 
Musaeus-Moses [1929]. 

27 Uber Duft, Licht und Geist als Lebens- 

nahrung [1930]. 

28 Uber die Priesterschaft des Pythagoras 

und Brahma [1929]. 

29 Ueber die Priesterschaft des Apollonius 

von Tvana und Frauja [1930]. 

30 Ueber die Priesterschaft des Ulfilas 

und die gotische Bibel [1930]. 

31 Die unterschlagene esoterische Lehre 

des Ulfilas [1930]. 

32 Ulfilas und das Schlfisselworterbuch 

zur Esoterik des Altertums und 
Mittelalters. I. Teil: A-C. [1930]. 

33 Ulfilas und das Schlfisselworterbuch 

zur Esoterik des Altertums und 
Mittelalters. II. Teil: D-J. [1930]. 

34 Ulfilas und das Schlfisselworterbuch 

zur Esoterik des Altertums und 
Mittelalters. III. Teil: K-S. [1930]. 

35 Ulfilas und das Schlfisselworterbuch 

zur Esoterik des Altertums und 
Mittelalters. IV. Teil: S-Z. [1930]. 

36 Jakob Lorber, der grosse Seher der 

vergangenen und koinmenden 
Zeiten, I. Teil: Lorbers Leben. 

37 Jakob Lorber, der grosse Seher ver- 

gangener und kommender Zeiten, 
II. Teil: DieMvsterien derirdischen 
Welt und des Mondes [1926]. 

38 Jakob Lorber, der grosse Seher ver- 



279 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



gangener und kommender Zeiten, 

III. Teil: Die Wunderwelt der 
Planeten Merkur, Mars und Jupiter. 

39 Jakob Lorber, der grosse Seher ver- 

gangener und kommender Zeiten, 

IV. Teil: Die Wunderwelt der 
Planeten Saturn, Uranus und Nep- 
tun [1926]. 

40 Das Leben St. Benedikts von Nursia 

[1930], 

4 1 Der Tod St. Benedikts von Nursia und 

seine Ordensregel I. Teil [1930]. 

42 Die Ordensregel St. Benedikts v. 

Nursia, II. Teil [1930]. 

43 Die Priesterschaft Benedikts v. Nursia, 

I. Teil: Urspriinge und Voriaufer 
[1930]. 

44 Elektrotheologie von Ritus und Liturgie, 

I. Teil [1930]. 

45 Elektrotheologie von Ritus und Liturgie, 

II. Teil [1908], 

46 Elektrotheologie des Sakraments der 

Taufe [1908]. 

47 Elektrotheologie der Sakramente der 

Firmung, Busse und Krankenolung 
[1908]. 

Elektrotheologische Handschriften. Burg 
Werfenstein, 1908, Manserie Szt. 
Balazs, 1 930. The dating and place 
of publication is unreliable, since 
these pamphlets continue the themes 
of the late numbers of the Arioman- 
tische Biicherei. 

El Elektrotheologie des Sakraments der 
Eucharistie, Messe u. Gralsfeier I. 
Teil: Name und Einsetzung [1908]. 
E2 Elektrotheologie des Sakraments der 
Eucharistie, Messe und Gralsfeier 
II. Teil: Geschichte und Wesen 
[1908]. 

E3 Elektrotheologie des Sakraments der 
Ehe und Priesterweihe [1908]. 

E4 Die Priesterschaft Benedikts von N ursia, 
II. Teil: Die Einwirkung auf die 
Menschheitsentwicklung [1930]. 

E5 Die Priesterschaft St. Bernhards v. Clair- 
vaux I. Teil [1930]. 

E6 Die Priesterschaft St. Bernhards v. Clair- 
vaux II. Teil [1930]. 

(d) Ritual Books. Privately published. 
Regularium Fratrum Ordinis Novi Templi (Werfen- 
stein, 1921). 

Tabularium ONT , 43 vols. (April 1923-April 
1927). 



librarium ONT, c. 15 vols. (1925-6). 

Examinatorium ONT , 7 vols. (1925). 

Festivarium NT oder Gedenk-und Festtagslesungen 
des Neutempleisen- Breviers. I. Buch: Legend- 
arium. Templeisengeschichtliche- und 
templeisenwissenschaftliche Lesungen fur 
die Matutin (Szt. Balazs, n.d.). 

Festivarium II. Buch: Evangelarium. Templeisen- 
moralische Lesungen fiir die Prim. 

Festivarium. III. Buch: Visionarium. Templeisen- 
metaphysische Lesungen fiir das Comple- 
torium. 

Hebdomadarium 

Cantuarium 

Rituarium 

Imaginarium NT, Alt- und Neutempleisentum in 
Bildem (Werfenstein, Szt. Balazs, Staufen, 
n.d.). 

Bibliomystikon oder Die Geheimbibel der Eingeweihten, 
10 vols. (Pforzheim, then Untertullnerbach 
near Vienna, then Berlin, finally Szt. 
Balazs?, 1930-C.38). 

Das Buch der Psalmen teutsch, das Gebetbuch der 
Ariosophen, Rassenmystiker und Anti- 
simiten 1. Bd: Text (Dusseldorf, 1926). 

Geschichte der Mystik , 7 instalments (Thalwyl, 
post- 1945). 

Arithmosophikon. Ein modem-wissenschaft- 
liches Lehrbuch der Kabbala und der 
Geistersprache der Zahlen, Buchstaben, 
Worte, Personen- und Ortsnamen, 19 
instalments (Thalwyl, c. 1 949). 

(e) Biographical Studies 

Wilfried Daim, Der Mann, der Hitler die Ideengab 
(Munich, 1958). 

F. Dietrich, ‘Georg Lanz von Liebenfelsf, Die 
Arue, Heft 23 (May 1955), 1-5. 

Rudolf J. Mund, Jorg Lanz v. Liebenfels und der 
Neue Templer Orden (Stuttgart, 1976). 

IV. The Armanists 

Ellegaard Ellerbek (i.e. Gustav Leisner) 

Auf heldischer Heerfahrt im heiligenjahr (Han- 
over, 1915). 

Aus deutscher Muttemacht (Hanover, 1915). 
PPPRRResident Bluff. Amerika-Skizzen 
(Hanover, 1916). 

Versailler Visionen. Ein okkult-armanisches 
Bekenntnis zu Pauli Wort: ‘Wisset Ihr 
nicht, dass Ihr Gotter seid?’ (Berlin, 

1919) . 

Sonne Sonnings Sohne auf Sonnensee (Berlin, 

1920) . 



280 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Wallfahrt zu Gott. Ein Spiel aus deutschem 
Streben ins Licht {Berlin, 1922). 

Georg Hauerstein Sr. 

Die Sippensiedlung (Isernhagen b. Hanover, 
1914). 

Franz Herndl 

Das Wortherkreuz (Vienna, 1901). 

Die Trutzburg. Autobiographische Skizzen 
des Einsiedlers auf der Insel Worth 
(Leipzig, 1909). 

Franz X. Kiessling 

Denkstatten deutscher Vorzeit im niederbsterreich- 
ischen Waldviertel (Vienna, 1891). 

Die drei Thayaburgen Buchenstein, Eibenstein, 
Unter-Thiimau, nebst der Ortlichkeiten 
Lehstein und einem kurzen, geschichtlich- 
heraldischen Abrisse iiber das Geschlecht der 
Herren von Tima (Vienna, 1895). 

Deutscher Tumerbund oderdeutsche Tumerschaft ? 
(Vienna, 1895). 

Verwalschtes und verlorenes deutsches Blut. Eine 
Mahnung zur Pflege alldeutscher 
Gesinnung (Vienna, 1897). 

Eine Wanderung im Poigreiche. Landschaft- 
liche, vorgeschichtliche, miithologische 
und volksgeschichtliche Betrachtungen 
iiber die Ortlichkeiten Horn, Rosen- 
burg, Altenburg, Drei-Eichen, Messem, 
Rondorf, Haselberg und andere, sowie 
deren Umgebungen mit besonderer 
Beriicksichtigung der deutschen Vorzeit 
und auf Grundlage von Miithe, Mein- 
ung und Sage des Volkes (Horn, 1898). 

Vber Besiedlungsverhdltnisse, sowie v'olkische und 
glaubensthumliche Zustande in der Vorzeit 
Niedefdsterreicks, mit besonderer Beruck- 
sichtigung von Vindobona (Vindo- 
mina) - Wien und dessen Umgebung 
(Vienna, 1899). 

Das deutsche Weihnachtsfest in Beziehung zur 
germanischen Miithe (Vienna, 1 902). 

Das deutsche Fest der Sommersonnwende , 
beleuchtet in Miithe, Meinung und 
Sage des Volkes (Vienna, 1903). 

Bernhard Koerner 

Genealogisch.es Handbuch biirgerlicher Familien. 
Deutsches Geschlechterbuch , vols. 6-119, 
edited by Bernh. Koerner (Gorlitz, 
1899-1944). 

Josef Ludwig Reimer 

Ein pangermanisches Deutschland (Leipzig, 

1905) . 

Grundzuge deutscher Wiedergeburt (Leipzig, 

1906) . 



Rudolf von Sebottendorff 

Metoula-Fiihrer: Tiirkisch (Berlin, 1913). 

‘Erwin Haller. Ein deutscher Kaufmann in 
der Tiirkei’, Miinchener Beobachter, 31 
August 1918-10 May 1919. 

Die Symbole des Tierkreises. Zur Symbolik 
jedes Grads nach alien Quellen gesam- 
melt (Leipzig, [1921]). 

Die Hilfshoroskopie (Leipzig, [1921]). 

Stunden- und Frage - Horoskopie. Mit Beriick- 
sichtigung der Perioden, Zyklen, Tat- 
twas, kabbalistische Horoskopie 
(Leipzig, 1921). 

Stemtajeln (Ephemeriden) von 1838-1922 
(Leipzig, [1922]). 

Praktischer Lehrgang zur Horoskopie (Leipzig, 
1922). 

Sonnen- und Mondorte. Stemzeit. Die Frage der 
Hauserberechnung (Leipzig, [1923]). 

Geschichte der Astrologie . Band 1. Urzeit und 
Altertum (Leipzig, 1923). 

Die Praxis deralten tiirkischen Freimaurerei. Der 
Schliissel zum Verstiindnis der Al- 
chimie. Eine Darstellung des Rituals, 
der Lehre, der Erkennungszeichen 
orientalischer Freimaurer (Leipzig, 
[1924]). 

Der Talisman des Rosenkreuzers . Roman 
(Pfullingen, [1925]). 

‘Die Levitation dcr Mewlewi’, Die weisse 
Fahne 6 (1925), 390-3. 

Astrologisches Lehrbuch (Leipzig, 1927). 

Bevor Hitler kam. Urkundliches aus der 
Friihzeit der national-sozialistischen 
Bewegung, second edition (Munich, 
1934). 

Philipp Stauff 

Wegweiser und Wegwarte. Deutschvolkische 
Vorzeitung, 7 vols. (1907-14). 

Der Krieg und die Friedensbestrebungen unserer 
Zeit. Gedankengange (Enzisweiler a. 
Bodensee, 1907). 

Das deutsche Wehrbuch (Berlin, 1912). 

Runenhauser (Berlin, 1912). 

Semi- Gotha. Weimarer historisch-genealo- 
gisches Taschenbuch des gesamten 
Adels jehudaischen Ursprunges 
(Weimar, 1912). 

Semi-AUiancen (Berlin, 1912). 

Semi-Kiirschner oder Literarisches Lexikon 
der Schriftsteller, Dichter, Bankiers, 
Geldleute, Arzte, Schauspieler, Kiinstler, 
Musiker, OfFiziere, Rechtsanwalte, 
Revol u tionare, F rauen rech tleri n nen, 
Sozialdemokraten usw., jiidischer 
Rasse und Versippung (Berlin, 1913). 



281 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Marchendeutungen. Sinn und Deutung der 
deutschen Volksmarchen (Berlin, 
1914}. 

Semi-Imperator, 1888-] 91 8 (Munich, 1919). 

Meine geistig-seelische Welt (Berlin-Lichter- 
felde, 1922). 

Tarnhari (i.e. Ernst Lauterer) 

An unsere Getreuen. Mahn- und Freundes- 
worte an die Einsamen im Hause 
(Diessen, (1914]). 

Aus den Traditionen der Laf-tar-ar-Sippe der 
der ‘Lauterer’. Eine Weihegabe an alle 
Treubefundene (Diessen, [1915]). 

An alle Deutschvolkischen! (Leipzig, 1920). 

1. Hakenkreuz-Rundbrief der Nationalen Kanzlei 
(Leipzig, [1920]). 

V. The Ariosophists 



(a) Periodicals 

Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Menschen- 
schicksal, 1 issue (Oestrich im Rheingau, 
October 1 925). Continued as Zeitschrift fur 
Menschenkenntnis und Schicksalsforschung. 

Zeitschrift fur Menschenkenntnis und Schicksals- 
forschung. Monthly. Diisseldorf-Unterrath, 
1926-27. Edited by Herbert Reichstein. 

Zeitschrift jur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform. 
Monthly. Pforzheim, then Pressbaum b. 
Vienna, then Berlin, 1928-33. Edited by 
Herbert Reichstein. 

Der Wehrmann. Organ der ‘Deutschen Wehr- 
mann-Gesellschaft’. Monthly. Pforzheim, 
1931-32. Edited by F. I. Wehrmann. 

Sig-Run (Pan-arische Jugendzeitschrift). 
Monthly. Pasing b. Munich, 1932. Edited 
by Wilhelm von Arbter. 

Die neue Flagge. Monthly. Dresden, 1931-33. 
Edited by Georg Richter. 

Ansche Rundschau. Weekly. Berlin, 1933-? Edited 
by Herbert Reichstein and Karl Kern. 

(b) Book-Series 

Ariosophische Bibliothek. 23 vols. Herbert 
Reichstein: Oestrich, then Dussel- 
dorf-Unterrath, then Pforzheim, 
1925-29. 

1 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Grundriss der ario- 

sophischen Geheimlehre (1925). 

2 Wehrmann, Die Tragik der Germanen. 

Gottgeschopf Weib und sein Fall 
(1926). 



3 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Ariosophische 

Rassenphrenologie (1926). 

4 Wehrmann, Die Sendung der Ger- 

manen. Gottgeschopf Weib und 
sein Aufstieg (1926). 

5 Reichstein, Warum Ariosophie? ( 1 926). 

6 Schmude, Ariosophische Gedichte 

und Spruche (1926). 

Lanz v. Liebenfels, Jakob Lorber, das 
grosste ariosophische Medium der 
Neuzeit. 

7 I. Teil: Lebensgang und die Mvsterien 

der irdischen Welt (1926). 

8 II. Teil: Die Mysterien der planet- 

arischen Welt (1926). 

9 III. Teil; Die Mysterien der makro- 

kosmischen Welt (1926). 

10 IV. Teil: Die Mysterien der mikro- 

kosmischen Welt (1926). 

1 1 Dietrich, Weisse und schwarze Magie 

(1926). 

12 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Das Sakrament der 

Ehe im Lichte der ariosophischen 
Theologie (1926). 

13 Tordai v. Sziigy, Die Materie, eine grosse 

Illusion (1926). 

14 Stromer-Reichenbach, Was wird? 

Vorausberechnung der deutschen 
Revolutions-Entwicklung (1926). 

15 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Meister Archibald 

u. Meister Amalarich, Die ario- 
sophische Kabbalistik von Name 
und Ortlichkeit (1926). 

16/17 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Ariosophische 
Rassenphysiognomik (1927). 

18 Die ariosophische Runen-Magie von 

Ihm . . . selbst durch den heiligen 
ariosophischen GeistderGegenwart 
(1928). 

19 Lanz v. Liebenfels, Ariosophische 

Urgeschichte der Handwerke und 
Kunste (1928). 

20/2) Lanz v. Liebenfels, Ariosophisches 
Wappenbuch (1928). 

22 Richter, Heilmagnetismus und 

Gedankenkrafte ( 1 929). 

23 Rudiger, Tvrkreis und Tattwas im 

Lichte wissenschafdicher Forschung 
(1929). 

Das Weistum des Volkes. 5 vols. Herbert 
Reichstein: Berlin, 1934-35. 

1 Reichstein, Das religiose und rassische 

Weltgeschehen von Urbeginn bis 
heute (1934). 

2 Reichstein, Geloste Ratsel altester 



282 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Geschichte - von Atlantis, Edda 

und der Bibel (1934). 

3 Reichstein, Enthalt die Bibel arisches 

Weistum? (1935). 

4 Reichstein, Die Religion des Blutes 

(1935). 

5 Reichstein, Nationalsozialismus und 

positives Christentum (1935). 

(c) Books 

Friedbert Asboga 

Handbuch der Astromagie. Ein Lehrgang fur 
Suchende und Lebensreformer, 8 parts 
(Pfullingen, 1925-28). 

Astromedizin, Astropharmazie und Astrodiatetik 
(Memmingen, 1931). 

Robert H. Brotz 

Grosses Lehr - und Handbuch der ariosophischen 
Graphologie , 1 9 instalments (Pforzheim, 
1927). 

Die Graphologie als Hilfsmittel zur Krankheit- 
serkennung , second edition (Zeulenroda, 
1932). 

Fra Dietrich (pseudonym for Theodor Czepl) 

Weisse und schwarze Magie (Diisseldorf- 
Unterrath, 1926). 

“‘Adveniat regnum tuum Die Arve , 

Heft 15 (December 1951), 11-13. 

‘Sparta, das grosse Beispiel’, Die Arve , Heft 
18 (November 1952), 8-12. 

Georg Hauerstein Jr. 

Petena-Handschrift 5. Bildersammlung NT 
Vit. (Imaginarium NT* II. Band) zur 
Templeisengeschichte (Petena, n.d.). 

Petena-Handschrift 6. Organum NT Vit. 
Grtindung, Regel und Geschichte des 
Vitaleisentums (Petena, n.d.). 

Ernst I ssberner- Haldane 

Der Chiromant. Werdegang, Erinnerungen 
von Reisen und aus der Praxis eines 
Chirosophen, mit Vortragen und 
Betrachtung fiir eine hohere Weltan- 
schauung (Bad Oldesloe, 1925). 

Wissenschafiliche Handlesekunst, 2 vols. (Berlin, 
1921-2). 

Menschen und Leute (Berlin, 1927). 

Handschriftdeutung (Leipzig, 1928). 

Yogha-Schulung fur westliche Verhaltnisse 
(Pforzheim, [1928]). 

Praktische Anleitung zur Handschriftendeutung 
(Wolfenbuttel, 1929). 

Charakterologische Tatsachen undderen Merkmale 
(Lorch, 1929). 

Karl Kern 

Rassen-Schutz (Stuttgart, 1927). 



Mensch und Charakter von Johann Praetorius, 
edited by Karl Kern, c.5 instalments 
(Pressbaum, 1931-2). 

Handbuch der Ariosophie Bd. 1 (Pressbaum, 
1932). 

B. Ravnald 

Emerich der Heilige. Der erste Christusritter 
und der Tern pel herren-Orden in 
Ungarn (Budapest, 1930). 

Herbert Reichstein 

Warum Ariosophie ? (Diisseldorf-Unterrath, 

1926) . 

Praktisches Lehrbuch der ariosophischen Kabbat- 
istik, c. 1 2 instalments (Pressbaum, 1931). 

Das Weistum des Volkes. Schriften uber Rasse, 
Religion und Volkstum, 5 vols. (Berlin, 
1934-35). 

Alfred Richter 

Die urewige Weisheitssprache der Menschenformen 
(Leipzig, 1932). 

Unsere Fiihrer im Lichte der Rassenfrage und 
Charakterologie (Leipzig, 1933). 

Der Heilgruss. Seine Art und Bedeutung 
(Dresden, 1933). 

Georg Richter 

Warum lebe ich auf Erden ? Ein Wegweiser fiir 
suchende Seelen (Niedersedlitz, 1927). 

Warum praktische Menschenkenntnis ? ( N ieder- 
sedlitz, 1929). 

Heilmagnetismus und Gedankenkrafte (Pforz- 
heim, 1929). 

AEIOU. Kraft- Welle— Mensch (Dresden, 
1931). 

Erwachtes Germanien (Dresden, 1933). 

Reichstag 1975. Vision (oder Wirklichkeit) 
(Dresden, 1933). 

Frenzolf Schmid 

Die Ur-Strahlen. Eine wissenschaftlicheEnt- 
deckung (Munich, 1928). 

Das neue Strahlen-Heilverfahren. DieTherapie 
der Zukunft (Halle, 1929). 

Urtexte der Ersten Gottlichen Offenbarung. Atta- 
lantische Urbibel (Pforzheim, 1931). 

Detlef Schmude 

Vom Schwingen und Klingen und gottlichen 
Dingen (Quedlingburg, [1919]). 

Das Gebot der Stunde. Uber die Arbeit zur 
Siedlung (Berlin, 1920). 

Durch Arbeit, zur Siedlung (Berlin, 1922). 

Ariosophische Gedichte und Sprilche (Pforzheim, 

1927) . 

Gregor Schwartz- Bostunitsch (formerly Gri- 

gorij Bostunif) 

Masonstvo i russkaya revoljucija (Novi Sad, 
1922). 



283 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Des Henkers Tod. Drama in einem Akt (Graz, 
1926). 

Die Freimaurerei, ihr Ur sprung, ihre Geheimnisse, 
ihr Wirken (Weimar, 1928). 

Die Bolschewisierung der Welt (Munich, 1929). 
Ein bulgarischer Faust (Pforzheim, 1930). 
Doktor Steiner - ein Schwindler wie keiner. Ein 
Kapital fiber Anthroposophie und die 
geistige Arbeit der ‘Falschen Propheten’ 
(Munich, 1930). 

Der Zarenmord und die ratselhaften Zeichen am 
Tatort des Mordes (Munich, 1931). 
Judischer Imperialismus (Landsberg, 1935). 

Friedrich Schwickert (also used the pseudonym 

Sindbad) 

Das Lebeselixier in Bulwers Romanen und in den 
Schriften wirklicher Adepten (Leipzig, 
1918). 

Sindbad and Adolf Weiss 

Die astrologische Synthese eine Kombinationslehre 
(Munich, 1925). 

Bausteine der Astrologie, 5 vols. (Munich, 
1926-27). 

Frodi Ingolfson Wehrmann 

Die Wirkung der Sonne in den zwolf Tierkreisen 
(Berlin, 1923). 

Die Tragik der Germanen. GottgeschopfWeib 
und sein Fall (Diisseldorf-Unterrath, 
1926). 

Die Sendung der Germanen. Gottgeschopf 
Weib und sein Aufsdeg (Diisseldorf- 
Unterrath, 1926). 

Sonne und Mensch (Stuttgart, 1927). 

Das Garma der Germanen (Berlin-Nieder- 
schonhausen, 1927). 

Dein Schicksal (Pforzheim, 1929). 

Hermann Wieland 

Atlantis, Edda und Bibel. Das entdeckte 
Geheimnis der Heiligen Schrift des 
deutschen Volkes Rettungaus Not und 
Tod (Nuremberg, 1922). 

VI. The Rune Occultists 

(a) Periodicals 

Deutsche Freiheit. Monthly. Munich, then 
Dinkelsbiihl, 1919-26. Edited by R. J. 
Gorsleben. Continued as Arische Freiheit. 

Arische Freiheit. Monthly. Dinkelsbiihl, 1927. 
Edited by R. J. Gorsleben. Absorbed by 
Zeitschrift jur Geistes- und Wissenschaftsreform 
in 1928, then continued as Hag All All Hag. 

Hag All All Hag. Monthly. Dinkelsbiihl, then 
Mittenwald, 1929-1934. Edited by R. J. 
Gorsleben, then Werner von Biilow. Con- 
tinued as Hagai in July 1934. 



Hagai. Monthly. Munich, then Mittenwald, 

July 1934-1939. Edited by Werner von 

Billow. 

(b) Books 

Werner von Biilow 

Marchendeutungen dutch Runen (Dresden, 
1925). 

Der Ewigkeitsgeha.lt der eddischen Runen und 
Zahlen. Grundriss arischer Weisheit 
und Jungbrunnen des deutschen Volk- 
stums (Munich, 1925). 

Rudolf John Gorsleben 

Allgemeine Flugblatter deutscher Nation, 5 issues, 
edited by R. John v. Gorsleben (Munich, 
1914). 

Der Rastagudr. Eine ernsthafte Komodie 
(Leipzig, 1913). 

Die Uberwindung des Judentums in uns und 
ausser uns (Munich, 1920). 

Die Edda [altere Edda). (Gotterlieder) 
(Pasing, 1922). 

Die Edda, ihre Bedeutung fur Gegenwart und 
Zukunft (Pasing, 1923). 

Das Blendwerk der Gotter <Gylfaginning > . 
(Pasing, 1923). 

Das Geheimnis von Dinkelsbiihl. Eine tiefgriind- 
liche und doch kurzweilige Abhand- 
lung iiber den Ursprung der Stadt 
Dinkelsbiihl (Dinkelsbiihl, 1928). 

Hoch-Zeit der Menschheit. Das Welt-Gesetz 
der Drei oder Entstehen - Sein - Ver- 
gehen in Ursprache - Urschrift - 
Urglaube. Aus den Runen geschopft 
(Leipzig, 1930). 

Siegfried Adolf Kummer 

Heilige Runenmacht. Wiedergeburt des 
Armanentums durch Runenubungen 
und Tanze (Hamburg, 1932). 

Runen-Magie (Dresden, 1933). 

Walhall. Hand- und Bilderschrift fur 
Runenkunde, Mysuk und Vorgeschichte. 
Briefe 1, 2. (Obersteina b. Radeberg, 
1934). 

Runen-Raunen. Eine Sammlung ein- 
gesandter Berichte nach der Runen- 
kunde (Obersteina b. Radeberg, 1934). 

Georg Lomer 

Hakenkreuz und Sowjetstem (Bad Schmiede- 
berg, 1925). 

Die Gotter der Heimat. Grundziige einer 
germanischer Astrologie (Bad Schmiede- 
berg, 1927). 

Wir und die Juden im Lichte der Astrologie 
(Hanover, 1928). 



284 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Die Evangelien als Himmelsbotschaft (Hanover, 
19S0). 

Friedrich Bernhard Marby 

‘Die Kreuzesform in Fleisch und Blut'. Arisch- 
christliches Buhnenspiel (Stuttgart, 
1924). 

Runenschrift, Runenwort, Runengymnastik 
(Stuttgart, 1931). 

Marby- Runen-Gymnastik (Stuttgart, 1932). 

Runen raunen richtig Rat ! Runen-Ubungen 
als Notwende und Heilsweg (Stuttgart, 
1934). 

Rassische Gymnastik als Aufrassungsweg 
(Stuttgart, 1935). 

Der Weg zu den Miittem inmitten der Kette der 
Wiedergeburten. Mit dem Anhang: Von 
den Geheimnissen alter Tiirme und 
Kirchen (Stuttgart, 1957). 

Sonne und Ptaneten im Tierkreis (Stuttgart, 
1975). 

VII. SS Ariosophists 

Gunther Kirchhoff 

‘Politische Notwendigkeiten*, typescript 
dated 11 August 1934, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS21/S1. 

‘Rotbart von Kyffhauser’, typescript 
dated 1 September 1934, Bundesarchiv, 
Koblenz, NS21/31. 

‘Die FAMA von Christian Rosenkreuz’, 
typescript dated May 1936, Bundes- 
archiv, Koblenz, NS21/31. 

‘Heimat-Geschichte des Ufgaues!’, undated 
typescript, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, 

NS21/31. 

‘Das politische Ratsel Asien aus Ortung 
erschlossen’, in: Rudolf J. Mund, Der 
Rasputin Himmlers (Vienna, 1982), pp. 
260-9. 

Otto Rahn 

Kreuzzug gegen den Gral (Freiburg, 1933). 

Luzifers Hofgesind. Eine Reise zu Europas 
guten Geistern (Leipzig, 1937). 

Karl Maria Wiligut (alias Karl Maria Weisthor 

and Jarl Widar) 

Seyfrieds Runen (Rabensteinsage) (Vienna, 
1903). 

‘Uraltes Familien-Siegel des Hauses Wili- 
gut’, J/agAJMtf /fag 10(1933), Heft 2/3, 
290-3. 

‘Gotos Raunen - Runenwissen!’, ‘Runen 
raunen . . . ’ and ‘Die Vierheiten’, ifagfi/ 
11 (1934), Heft 7, 7-15. 

‘Die Zahl: Runen raunen, Zahlen reden 
. . . Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 8, 1-4. 



‘Die Schopfungsspirale, das “Weltenei’T, 
Hagai 11 (1934), Heft 9, 4-7. 

‘Bericht uber die Dienstreise von SS-Ober- 
fuhrer Weisthor nach Gaggenau/Baden 
und Umgebung vom 16.-24. Juni 
1936’, typescript, Bundesarchiv, Kob- 
lenz, Nachlass Darre AD26. 

‘Bericht uber die Auffindung des Irmin- 
kreuzes als Ortung im sudlichen 
Niedersachsen, also die 5. Irmins- 
kreuzortung’, typescript dated July 
1 936, Bundesarchiv, Koblenz, Nachlass 
Darre AD26. 

(b) Biographical Studies 

Rudolf J. Mund, Der Rasputin Himmlers. Die 
Wiligut-Saga (Vienna, 1982). 

— , Eine notwendige Erklarung, Das andere 
Kreuz (Vienna, 1983). 

B. SECONDARY SOURCES 

Ackerman n, Josef. Heinrich Himmler als Ideologe 
(Gottingen, 1970). 

Appell, J. W. Die Ritter-, Rauber- und Schaucr- 
romantik (Leipzig, 1859). 

Besser, Joachim. ‘Die Vorgeschichte des 
Nationalsozialismus in neuem Licht’, Die 
Pforte 2 (1950), 763-84. 

Butler, Rohan d’O. The Roots of National Socialism 
1 783-1 93 J. (London, 1941). 

Cohn, Norman. The Pursuit of the Millennium, 
third edition (New York, 1970). 

, Warrant for Genocide. The myth of the 

Jewish world-conspiracy and the Protocols 
of the Elders of Zion (London, 1967). 

— , Europe’s Inner Demons. An enquiry in- 
spired bv the Great Witch-Hunt (London, 
1975). 

Coleman, William Emmette. ‘The source of 
Madame Blavatskv’s writings’, in Vsevolod 
Soloviev, A Modem Priestess of Isis (London, 
1895), pp. 353-66. 

Dikenmann, U. ‘Hans Lanz von Liebenfels, 
ein mittelalterlicher Emporkommling’, 
Thurgauische Beitrdge 21 (1911), 34-48. 

Eckstein, Friedrich. ‘Alte unnennbare TageV 
Erinnerungen aus siebzig Lehr- und Wander- 
jahren (Vienna, 1936). 

Epstein, Klaus. The Genesis of German Conservatism 
(Princeton, 1966). 

Fest, Joachim. Hitler, translated by Richard 
and Clara Winston (London, 1974). 

Field, Geoffrey G. Evangelist of Race. The 
Germanic vision of Houston’ Stewart 
Chamberlain (New York, 1981). 



285 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Franz-Willing, Georg. (Jrsprung der Hitler - 
bewegung 1919-1922 , second edition 
(Preussisch Oldendorf, 1974). 

Frecot, Janos, Geist, Johann Friedrich and 
Kerbs, Diethart. F1DUS 1868-1948: Zur 
asthetischen Praxis biirgerlicher Fluchtbewegungen 
(Munich, 1972). 

Gasman, Daniel. The Scientific Origins of National 
Socialism. Social Darwinism in Ernst Haeckel 
and the German Monist League (London, 
1971). 

Greiner, Josef. Das Endedes Hitler-Mythos (Zurich, 
1947). 

Hamel, Iris. Volkischer Verband und nationale 
Gewerkschaft. Der Deutschnationale Hand- 
lungsgehilfen- Verband 1893-1933 (Frank- 
furt, 1967). 

Heer, Friedrich. Der Glaube des Adolf Hitler. 
Anatom ie einer politischen Religiositat 
(Munich, 1968). 

Henry, Clarissa and Hillel, Marc. Children of 
the SS (London, 1975). 

Hermand, Jost. ‘Gralsmotive um die Jahr- 
hundertwende’, Vierteljahresschrift fur 
Literaturwissenschaft und Geistesgeschichte 36 
(1962), 521-43. 

Herwig. (i.e. Eduard Pichl). Georg Sckonerer und 
die Entwicklung des Alldeutschtumes in der 
Ostmark, 4 vols. (Vienna, 1912-23). 

Howe, Ellic. Urania’s Children. The strange 
world of the astrologers (London, 1967). 

, ‘Rudolph Freiherr von SebottendorfP 

(unpublished typescript, 1968). 

, The Magicians of the Golden Dawn. A 

documentary history of a magical order 
1887-1923 (London, 1972). 

, ‘Fringe Masonry in England, 1 870— 

85’, Ars Quatuor Coronatorum 85 (1972), 
242-80. 

Howe, Ellic and Moller, Helmut. ‘Theodor 
Reuss. Irregular Freemasonry in Germany, 

1 900-23’, Ars Quatuor Coronatorum 91 (1978), 
28-47. 

Hunger, Ulrich. Die Runenkunde im Dritten 
Reich. Ein Beitrag zur Wissenschafts- und 
Ideologiegeschichte des Nadonalsozial- 
ismus (Frankfurt, 1984). 

Huser, Karl. Wewelsburg 1933-1945 . Kult- und 
Terrorstatte der SS (Paderborn, 1982). 

Jasper, Gotthard. ‘Aus den Akten der Prozesse 
gegen die Erzberger-Morder’, Vierteljahres- 
hefte fur Zeitgeschichte 10 (1962), 430-53. 

Jenks, William A. Vienna and the young Hitler 
(New York, 1960). 

, Austria under the Iron Ring 1879-1893 

(Charlottesville, 1 965). 



Jetzinger, Franz, Hitler’s Youth , translated by 
Lawrence Wilson (Westport, Conn., 1976). 

Joachim sthaler, Anton. Die Breitspurbakn Hitlers. 
Eine Dokumentation uber die geplante 
transkontinentale 3-Meter-Breitspureisen- 
bahn derjahre 1942-1945 (Freiburg, 1981). 

Jones, J. Sydney. Hitler in Vienna 1907—13. 
Clues to the future (London, 1983). 

Kater, Michael H. Das ' Ahnenerbe’ der SS 1935- 
1945. Ein Beitrag zur Kulturpolitik des 
Dritten Reiches (Stuttgart, 1974). 

Kersten, Felix. The Kersten Memoirs 1940-1945 , 
translated by Constantine Fitzgibbon and 
James Oliver (London, 1956). 

Klemperer, Klemens von. Germany 's New Con- 
servatism. Its history and dilemma in the 
twentieth century (Princeton, 1968). 

Kubizek, August. Young Hitler. The story of our 
friendship, translated by E. V. Anderson 
(Maidstone, 1973). 

Kuhn, Alvin Boyd. Theosophy. A modem revival of 
ancient wisdom (New York, 1930). 

Laqueur, Walter Z. Young Germany. A history 
of the German vouth movement (London, 
1962). 

, Russia and Germany. A century of 

conflict (London, 1965). 

Lebovics, Herman. Social Conservatism and the 
Middle Classes in Germany 1914-1933 
(Princeton, 1969). 

Liljegren, S. B. ‘Quelques romans anglais. 
Source partielle d’une religion moderne’, 
in Melanges d’histoire litteraire generate, edited 
by Fernand Baldensperger, 2 vols. (Paris, 
1930), II, 60-77. 

, Bulwer-Lytton’s Novels and Isis Unveiled 

(Uppsala, 1957). 

Lohalm, Uwe. Volkischer Radikalismus . Die 
Geschichte des Deutschvolkischen Schutz- 
undTrutz-Bundes 1919-1923 (Hamburg, 
1970). 

McIntosh, Christopher. The Posy Cross Unveiled 
(Wellingborough, 1980). 

Mohler, Armin. Die konservative Revolution in 
Deutschland 1918-1932. Ein Handbuch 
(Darmstadt, 1972). 

Mosse, George L. ‘The mystical origins of 
National Socialism’, Journal of the History 
of Ideas 22 (1961), 81-96. 

— , The Crisis of German Ideology. Intellectual 

origins of the Third Reich (New York, 
1964). 

— , The Nationalization of the Masses (New 

York, 1975). 

Muller- Frau reuth, Carl. Die Ritter- und Rauber- 
romane { Halle, 1894). 



286 




BIBLIOGRAPHY 



Mullern-Schonhausen, Johannes von. Die 
Losung des RdtseTs Adolf Hitler. Der Versuch 
einer Deutung der geheimnisvollsten 
Erscheinung der Weltgeschichte (Vienna, 
[1959]). 

Murphet, Howard. Hammer on the Mountain. 
The Life of Henry Steel Olcott (1832- 
1907) (Wheaton, 111., 1972). 

, When Daylight Comes. A biography of 

Helena Petrovna Blavatsky (Wheaton, 111., 
1975). 

Phelps, Reginald H. 'Die Hitler-Bibiiothek’, 
Deutsche Rundschau 80 (1954), 923-31. 

, ‘Theodor Fritsch und der Antisemids- 

mus’, Deutsche Rundschau 87 (1961), 442-9. 

, ‘Anton Drexler - Der Grunder der 

NSDAP’, Deutsche Rundschau 87 (1961), 
1134-43. 

— , ‘“Before Hitler came”: Thule Society 
and Germanen Orden’, Journal of Modem 
History 25 (1963), 245-61. 

, ‘Hitler and the Deutsche Arbeiter- 

partei’, American Historical Review 68(1 963), 
974-86. 

Poliakov, Leon. The Aryan Myth. A history of 
racist and nationalist ideas in Europe 
(London, 1974). 

Pulzer, Peter G. J. The Rise of Political Anti- 
Semitism in Germany and Austria (New York, 
1964). 

Ravenscroft, Trevor. The Spear of Destiny. The 
occult power behind the spear which 
pierced the side of Christ (London, 1972). 

Rhodes, James M. The Hitler Movement. A 
modern millenarian revolution (Stamford, 
Calif., 1980). 

Ringer, Fritz, K. The Decline of the German Manda- 
rins. The German academic community 
1890-1933 (Cambridge, Mass., 1969). 

Roberts, J. M. The Mythology of the Secret Societies 
(London, 1972). 

Rogalla von Bieberstein, Johannes. Die These 
von der Verschworung 1776-1945. Phiio- 
sophen, Freimaurer, Juden, Liberale und 
Sozialisten als Verschworer gegen die 
Sozialordnung (Frankfurt, 1978). 



Soloviev, Vsevolod. A Modem Priestess of Isis 
(London, 1895). 

Speer, Albert. Inside the Third Reich (London, 

1970) . 

, The Spandau Diaries (London, 1976). 

Stark, Gary D. Entrepreneurs of Ideology. Neo- 
conservadve publishers in Germany 1 890- 
1933 (Chapel Hill, 1981). 

Stern, Fritz. The Politics of Cultural Despair. A 
study in the rise of the Germanic Ideology 
(Berkeley, 1974). 

Viatte, Auguste. Les sources occultes du romantisme, 
2 vols. (Paris, 1928). 

Waite, Robert G. L. Vanguard of Nazism. The 
Free Corps movement in postwar Germany 
1918-1923 (Cambridge, Mass., 1970). 

Waite, Robert G. L. The Psychopathic God: Adolf 
Hitler (New York, 1977). 

Webb, James. The Flight from Reason. Volume 1 
of the Age of the Irrational (London, 

1971) . 

, The Occult Establishment (La Salle, 111., 

1976). 

, The Harmonious Circle. The lives and 

work of G. I. GurdjiefT, P. D. Ouspensky, 
and their followers (London, 1 980). 

Whiteside, Andrew Gladding. Austrian National 
Socialism before 1918 (The Hague, 1962). 

, The Socialism of Fools. Georg Ritter von 

Schonerer and Austrian Pan-Germanism 
(Berkeley, 1975). 

Williams, Gertrude Marvin. Priestess of the Occult 
(Madame Blavatsky ) (New York, 1946). 

Wilson, Bryan R. ‘Millennialism in comparative 
perspective’, in Millennial Dreams in Action , 
edited by Sylvia L. Thrupp, Comparative 
Studies in Society and History 2 (The 
Hague, 1962), pp. 93-114. 

■, Religion in Secular Society (London, 1 966). 

Wulff, Wilhelm Th.H. Tierkreis und Hakenkreuz. 
Als Astrologe am Himmlers Hof (Gutersloh, 
1968). 

Yates, Frances A. The Rosicrucian Enlightenment 
(London, 1972). 

Zmarzlik, Hans-Giinther. ‘Der Sozialdarwin- 
ismus in Deutschland als geschichtliches 
Problem’, Vierteljahreshefte fur Zeitgeschichte 
11 (1963), 245-73. 



287 




Index 



Adelmann-Huttula, Willy, 165 
Aemilius, Fra, 215 
Agrippa von Nettesheim, 27, 62 
Albertus Magnus, 102 
Alsberg, Max, 142 
Altmann, Max, 27 
Amalarich, Fra, 120 
Ammon, Otto, 13 

Anders, Richard, 160, 182, 183, 188 
Andreae, Johann Valentin, 58 
Arbter, Wilhelm von, 173 
Archibald, Fra, 120 
Arco auf Valley, Count, 1 48 
Asboga, Friedbert, 116 
Axelrod, Tobias, 148 

Badeni, Count Casimir, 10, 81 
Bal, Jerome, 45 
Bahrusch, Elsa, 191 
Balzli, Johannes, 27, 45, 47 
Bartels, Adolf, 131 
Baum, Johannes, 27, 165 
Beranek, 43 
Berger, Rudolf, 42-3 
Bergson, Henri, 102 
Bernuth, Ludwig von, 43, 99 
Bertram, Fra, 120 
Besant, Annie, 25, 26, 101, 213 
Bierbaumer, Kathe, 147 
Bismarck, Otto von, 3-4, 8, 10, 38, 193 
Blavatsky, Helena Petrovna 2, 18-23, 24, 25, 
28, 30, 52-4, 61, 65, 101-2, 213, 218-19 
Bockel, Otto, 124 
Bohme, Edwin, 26, 30 
Boehme, Jakob, 24, 27, 59, 102, 213 
Bolsche, Wilhelm, 95, 101 
Braunlich, 131 

Brandler-Pracht, Karl, 27, 29, 103 
Brass, Hermann, 43 
Braun, Karl Alfred, 147 
Breymann, Hans, 73 



Brockhusen, Eberhard von, 45, 47, 123, 131 
132, 133, 155 

Brotz, Robert H., 165, 168, 171 
Briicher, Martin, 159 
Brunner, Alfred, 131 
Bruno, Giordano, 62, 88 
Bulow, Werner von, 46, 159-60, 182, 192 
Bulwer-Lytton, Sir Edward, 19, 27, 55, 2 1 8-1 9, 
224 

Burger-Villingen, Robert, 129 
Buttmann, Rudolf, 147 

Chamberlain, Houston Stewart, 125, 194 

Chlodio, Fra, 120 

Class, Heinrich, 126 

Comenius, Jan Amos, 102 

Crowley, Aleister, 223-4 

Curt, Fra, 112, 113 

Czepl, Theodor, 1 12, 1 19, 168, 180 

Dahn, Hans, 149 
Dannehl, Franz, 150 
Darre, Richard Walther, 178, 184 
Daumenlang, Anton, 1 50 
Davis, Andrew Jackson, 24 
Dessoir, Max, 23 
Deunov, Petr, 169 
Devaswara Lama, 167 
Diefenbach, Wilhelm, 1 13 
Drexler, Anton, 147, 150 
Duensing, Konrad, 1 7 1 

Ebertin, Elsbeth, 162 
Ebertin, Reinhold, 168 
Eckart, Dietrich, 46, 149, 154, 156, 199-200, 
220-3 

Eckhart, Meister, 103, 213 
Eckhartshausen, Karl von, 26 
Eckloh (Haus), 129 
Eckstein, Friedrich, 28 
Eder, Franz Xaver, 147 



289 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Edmonds, Judge, 24 

Egloffstein, Wladimir von, 55 

Eher, Franz, 146 

Eisner, Kurt, 144, 146, 147, 148 

Ellerbek, Ellegaard, 46, 86, 154 

Encausse, Gerard (Papus), 25, 213 

Engelhardt, G., 168 

Engelhardt, Karl, 45 

Erwin, Fra, 112 

Erzberger, Matthias, 133, 156 

Evola, Julius, 190 

Feder, Gottfried, 147, 149 
Fidus (Hugo Hoppener), 51, 113 
Forster, Paul, 125 
Frank, Hans, 221 

Frederick I Barbarossa (Emperor), 87 
Frederick II, Elector of the Palatine, 59 
Frederick IV (Emperor), 87 
Frederick William II of Prussia, 59, 140 
Freese, G. W., 131, 144 
Freilitzsch, Franz von, 147 
Friedrich, Wilhelm, 25, 51, 52 
Fritsch, Theodor, 93, 123-8, 149 

Gaisberg, Friedrich von, 73 
Gaubatz, Georg, 142, 144 
Gensch (Dr), 131 

Georgiewitz-Weitzer, Demeter (G. W. Surva), 
27, 55, 168 

Gerlach, Dankwart, 43 
Gerstner, Herbert, 168 
Glasenapp, Conrad, 43 
Gobineau, Arthur de, 13, 1 24 f, 194 
Goering, Hermann, 117, 221 
Goring, Hugo, 25, 30, 43 
Gotz, Ludwig, 173 

Gorsleben, Rudolfjohn, 46, 1 55-60, 162, 171, 
177, 183, 185, 213 

Gravell van Jostenoode, Harald Arjuna, 43, 
99, 100-1 

Grassinger, Hans Georg, 146 
Grill, 196 
Gritzner, Erich, 7 1 
Grobe-Wutischky, Arthur, 103 
Gunther, Hans F. K., 156 
Gurdjieff, George Ivanovitch, 169, 221 
Gutberlet, Wilhelm, 147 

Haeckel, Ernst, 13, 102 
Hanig, Hans, 165 
Hagn, Theoderich, 224 
Hamann, Johann Georg, 27, 103 
Hammer- Purgstall, Josef von, 61 
Hanftmann, B., 45 
Hanisch, Reinhold, 196 
Harden, Maximilian, 133 



Hargrove, E. T., 25 
Harpf, Adolf, 43, 99 
Harrer, Karl, 146, 150-1, 202 
Hartmann, Eduard von, 23 
Hartmann, Franz, 24-7, 28, 30, 44, 45, 54, 55, 
59, 60, 61, 100, 213 
Hartmann, Kurt, 172 
Hauerstein, Georg sen., 45, 65, 117, 123 
Hauerstein, Georg jun., 116f, 121, 122 
Haushofer, Karl, 220-1, 223 
Heimerdinger, Erwin von, 131, 132-3 
Heindl, 142 
Heinsch, Josef, 160 
Heise, Heinrich, 55 
Heise, Karl, 27, 44, 45, 55 
Hellenbach, Lazar von, 23, 28 
Hellwig, Karl August, 43, 45, 123, 126, 129 
Helmuth, Karl, 27 

Hering, Johannes, 127, 131, 144, 149, 156,201 
Herndl, Franz, 28, 109 
Herzog, Karl, 44 

Hess, Rudolf, 149, 199-200, 220-1 
Heuss, Theodor, 147 
Hewalt (Mr), 166 
H;lm, Karl, 44 

Himmler, Heinrich, 6, 46, 97, 162, 165, 170, 
177-8, 183-90, 192, 202, 203, 221 
Hitler, Adolf, 5, 14, 16, 46, 150-1, 174, 175, 
186, 192-203, 217-225 
Hochberg, Friedrich Franz von, 115-6, 171 
Horbiger, Hanns, 174 
Hoffmann, Johannes, 148 
Holmes, Mrs Rice, 24 
Horn, Paul, 121, 122, 169 
Horst, Walter, 168 

Hubbe-Schleiden, Wilhelm, 23-4, 25, 28, 55 
Hund, Gotthelf von, 61, 65 
Hussein Pasha, 137-8 

Iffland, Berta Anna, 141 
Iro, Karl, 39 

I ssberner- Haldane, Ernst, 117, 165-8, 171, 172 

Jacolliot, Louis, 219 

Jahn, Friedrich Ludwig, 9 

Jeffersen (Dr), 166 

Judge, William Quan, 26 

Judt, Alfred, 173 

Jurgens, Heinrich, 165 

Jung-Stilling, Johann Heinrich, 27, 103 

Kellner, Karl, 61 
Kemnitz, Mathilde von, 159 
Kern, Karl, 168, 173, 175 
Khull, Ferdinand, 43 
Kiesewetter, Karl, 24 
Kiessling, Franz, 38, 179 



290 




INDEX 



Kirchhoff, Gunther, 160, 184-6 
Kirchmayr, Heinrich, 37 
Kiss, Edmund, 188 
Kitchener, Herbert Lord, 113 
Kniepf, Albert, 26, 103 
Knobelsdorff, Manfred von, 187 
Koerner, Bernhard, 43, 45, 64 f, 72-3, 123, 
131, 132, 185 
Koot Hoorn i, 21, 54 
Kraeger, Heinrich, 131 
Kraus, Karl, 1 1 3 
Krause, Ernst, 13 
Krenn, Walter, 1 1 9 
Krohn, Friedrich, 151 
Kubizek, August, 193, 195, 199 
Kummer, Siegfried Adolf, 161-2 
Kunze, Dora, 147 
Kurz, Heinz, 147 

Lachmann, Ernst, 175 
Ladislaus, Fra, 120 
Lagarde, Paul de, 4 
Lang, Marie, 30 
Langbehn, Julius, 4 
Langgassner, Anton, 9 
Lanz, Friedolin, 1 17 
Lanz, Herwik, 117 

Lanz von Liebenfels, Jorg, 2, 5, 7, 11, 13, 14, 
30, 43, 46, 55, 90-1, 127, 131, 149, 151, 
164, 165, 166, 167, 168, 169, 172, 173, 174, 
175, 177, 180, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 
198, 200, 202, 221, 224; 
millenarianism, 96-9, 104; occultism, 100- 
5, 209-13; ONT, 61, 109-22, 132, 164, 167, 
171, 173, 197; theozoologv and ‘Ario- 
Christianity’, 91-6 
Lapouge, Vacher de, 125 
Lavard, Sir Austen Henry, 93 
Leadbeater, Charles Webster, 25, 213 
Leers, Joachim von, 188 
Lehmann, Julius Friedrich, 147 
Leiningen-Billigheim, Karl zu, 28 
Levi, Eliphas, 61, 213 
Levien, Max, 148 
Levine- Nissen, Eugen, 148 
Ley, Willy, 219 
Libra, C., 103 

Liebermann von Sonnenberg, Max, 124 
Linden, Antonius von der, 27 
List, Guido (von), 2,5,7,9,11,13, 30, 33-48, 
90, 100, 103, 113, 123, 126-7, 132, 142, 
143, 145, 149, 151, 152, 154, 158, 160, 162, 
165, 172, 177, 179, 180, 183, 184, 185, 192, 
193, 198-201, 202, 213, 221, 223; 
folklore and occultism, 66-77, 84; 
millenarianism, 78-89, 98; HAO, 46-7, 
64-5, 86, 129, 132; Wotanist religion, 49- 
55 



Lowensrein, Prince Max von, 169 
Lomer, Georg, 162, 165, 175 
Loiter, Michael, 150 
Ludendorff, Erich, 159, 199-200 
Lueger, Karl, 43 

Maack, Ferdinand, 26 
Mailander, Alois, 28, 55 
Marbv, Friedrich Bernhard, 46, 160-2, 174 
March, Albert, 159 
Maschlufskv, Philipp, 28 
Maximilian I (Emperor), 87 
Mecklenburg, Grand Duke fohann Albrecht 
von, 133 

Mesch, Lorenz, 133, 156 
Mevrink, Gustav, 28, 165 
Moeller van den Bruck, Arthur, 4 
Moltke, Helmuth von, 38 
Morawe, Christian Friedrich, 171 
Morva, 21, 54 
Mussolini, Benito, 172, 221 

Nauhaus, Walter, 143, 149 
Neumann, Wilhelm A., 99 
Neupert, Karl E., 174 
Nietzsche, Friedrich, 194 
Nostradamus, Michael, 103, 164 
Nuse, Karl, 159, 160 

Olcott, Henry Steel, 23, 24 
Oppel, Alfred Martin, 27 
Ortwin, Master, 121 
Ossendowski, Ferdvnand, 218 
Ostwald, Wilhelm, 102 

Paracelsus, 24, 25, 59, 103 

Paragini, 166 

Pavns, Hugo de, 112 

Penka, Carl, 92 

Petter, Carl Reinhold, 159 

Pfefferkorn, Johann, 63 

Pftster-Schwaighusen, Hermann von, 43 

Pickl-Scharfenstein, Wilhelm von, 43 

Pico della Mirandola, Giovanni, 62 

Pioda, Alfredo, 25 

Pollner, Otto, 103 

Potsch, Leopold, 193 

Pohl, Hermann, 126-8, 130-3, 142-4 

Polzer, Aurelius, 38, 40, 43, 82 

Praetorius, Johann, 1 73 

Prel, Carl du, 23, 28, 103 

Pretzsche, Ernst, 222-4 

Ptak, Karl, 40 

Raatz, Paul, 26 
Rahn, Otto, 188-9 
Ramachiro, 167 



291 




THE OCCULT ROOTS OF NAZISM 



Rathenau, Walther, 154 
Raynald, B., 121 

Reichstein, Herbert, 46, 117, 164-76, 192 

Reimer, Josef Ludwig, 44 

Reuchlin, Johann, 62-3 

Reuss, Theodor, 59, 61 

Reuter, Otto Sigfrid, 159 

Richter, Alfred, 161, 172 

Richter, Georg, 161, 172-3 

Richter, Sigmund, 59 

Rittlinger, Herbert, 152 

Rohm, Karl, 27 

Rohmeder, Wilhelm, 43, 128, 149 
Rosenberg, Alfred, 149, 154, 170, 220, 223 
Rosenkreutz, Christian, 58 
Rudolph, Hermann, 26, 30 
Rudiger, Ernst, 180, 182 
Ruttinger, Julius, 126, 130 

St Benedict ofNursia, 103, 104 
St Bernhard ofClairvaux, 103, 108, 1 12f, 210 
St Bruno, 103 

Saint-Yves d’Alveydre, Joseph, 218 
Schaefer, Friedrich, 159 
Schaefer-Gerdau, Kathe, 159, 183 
Schalk, Friedrich, 179 
Schappeller, Karl, 174 
Schemua, Blasius von, 44, 54, 113 
Schiller, Friedrich, 182, 188 
Schlogl, Nivard, 91-2 
Schmid, Frenzolf, 174, 175 
Schmidt, Friedrich von, 74 
Schmidt, Karl Otto, 165 
Schmidt- Falk, Elsa, 199-200 
Schmude, Detlef, 1 12, 1 13, 1 14-7, 168, 216 
Schonerer, Georg von, 2, 10, 11, 37-8, 39, 40, 
82, 92, 120, 124, 202; 

Los von Rom movement, 12-13, 40, 68, 81 
Schulz, Arthur, 43 
Schulz, Heinrich, 133, 156 
Schulze, Ida, 160 
Schwartz (Songmaster), 1 7 1 
Schwartz-Bostunitsch, Gregor, 162, 169-70, 
171 

Schweiger-Lerchenfeld, Amand von, 43 
Schwickert, Friedrich, 55, 121 
Scott-Elliot, William, 52, 101 
Sebaldt, Max Ferdinand, 30, 51-2 
Sebottendorff, Heinrich von, 140-1 
Sebottendorff, Rudolf von, 48, 123, 133, 
135-52, 201, 223 

Sebottendorff, Siegmund von, 140-1 
Seiling, Max, 43, 55 
Shou, Peryt, 143, 165 
Silesius, Angelus, 102, 213 
Simons, Gustav, 113 
Simony, Oskar, 28 



Slade, Henry, 24 

Spunda, Franz, 165 

Stauf von der March, Ottokar, 40 

Stauff, Berta, 154 

Stauff, Philipp, 44, 45, 48, 123, 127, 129, 
131-2, 149, 154, 201 
Stein, Walter Johannes, 221-3 
Steiner, Rudolf, 26, 28, 30, 60, 101 , 170, 221, 
223 

Steinhoff, Grete, 172 

Steininger, Babette, 199-200 

Streicher, Julius, 156 

Strindberg, August, 113 

Stromer von Reichenbach, Karl, 168, 175 

Tarnhari (Ernst Lauterer), 45-6, 84 f, 86, 155, 
185 

Teltscher, Friedrich, 182 
Termudi, 138 
Thaler, Marie, 180 
Thaler, Willy, 180 

Thurn und Taxis, Prince Gustav von, 148, 223 

Tiede, Ernst, 103, 151, 169 

Tillessen, Heinrich, 133, 156 

Tingley, Katherine, 25, 26 

Tordai von Sziigy, Wilhelm, 121, 169 

Tranker, Heinrich, 27 

Trithemius, Johann, 62, 72 

Unbescheid, Hermann, 73 

Vollrath, Hugo, 27 
Voss, Klara, 139 

Wachler, Ernst, 43, 162 
Wachtmeister, Countess Constance, 25 
Wagner, Richard, 38, 41, 43, 130, 193, 194, 
197, 200 

Wahrmund, Adolf, 99 
Wannieck, Friedrich, 37, 43, 44, 54 
Wannieck, Friedrich Oskar, 43, 44, 65, 199 
Warnsdorf, Nittel von, 40 
Weber, Arthur, 26, 27, 44 
Wecus, Edmund von, 169 
Wehrmann, Frodi Ingolfson, 46, 165-6, 168, 
171-3 

Weitbrecht, Konrad, 116 
Wentworth, Kate, 24 
Westarp, Countess Heila von, 148, 223 
Westcott, William Wynn, 59, 65 
Wichtl, Friedrich, 156 
Wiegershaus, Friedrich, 43 
Wieland, Hermann, 171, 213 
Wilhelm I (Kaiser), 10, 38 
Wilhelm II (Kaiser), 144 
Wilhelm, Fra, 120 

Wiligut, Karl Maria (Weisthor), 159, 160, 162, 
177-91, 192 



292 




INDEX 



Wiligut, Malwine, 182, 190 
Wilser, Ludwig, 13, 92, 131 
Winter, Heinrich, 65 
Winterstein, Franz, 43 
Wittek, Anna, 40 
Wolf], Johann Walthari, 117-19 
Wollner, Johann Christoph von, 59 
Wolf, Karl Heinrich, 37, 38, 39, 40 
Wolff, Karl, 187, 190 
Woltmann, Ludwig, 13, 14, 92, 93 



Wolzogen, Ernst von, 45 
Wright, C. F., 25 
Wschiansky, Fanny, 39 
Wunsche, August, 99 
Wulff, Wilhelm Th. H., 165, 168 
Wulfila, 99, 210 

Zillmann, Paul, 25-6, 30, 43, 60, 101 
Zollner, Friedrich, 28 
Zschaetzsch, Karl Georg, 213 



293